Why I Love Journals (And You Should Too)

I’m kinda obsessed with journals.

It’s not my fault. There are so many gorgeous journals out there just begging to be bought, and I’m a writer. A pen and paper are tools of the trade, so buying journals is a pretty much a business expense.

The thing is… I hardly ever write in them.

That’s awful, right? I have so many cool ones. Take a look at these:

My writing journals
Of course there’s a Wonder Woman one. You should know me by now.

They’re too pretty to write in. No, seriously. A blank journal is a book of limitless possibilities. I could write the greatest genre mashup novel ever inside one, or jot down ideas for characters and settings that eventually spawn off into a giant epic fantasy series. Or maybe tomorrow I’ll fall through a magic portal and need a journal to record my thrilling adventures. (Hey, it could happen.) Continue reading Why I Love Journals (And You Should Too)

Turn Back the Pages: The Infinity Gauntlet

Turn Back the Pages is a biweekly feature where I spotlight a comic that is not fresh and new. It may have come out a few months ago or even a few years ago. Maybe it was hyped and popular, or maybe it was an underappreciated gem. Whatever the case, it’ll be a great comic that’s well worth a read.

Infinity Gauntlet Cover

You may have heard about a little movie called Avengers: Infinity War. Or maybe not. There hasn’t been much advertisement or hype for it. 😉

As we endure the tortuous wait for opening night, let’s talk about the comic it’s based on: The Infinity Gauntlet. (No, not Infinity War, ironically enough. That’s the sequel comic.) Having read bits and pieces of the storyline, I finally got the chance to read the entire graphic novel from start to finish, and it’s fascinating.

It’s also nothing like the movie is going to be. Continue reading Turn Back the Pages: The Infinity Gauntlet

Turn Back the Pages: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl

Turn Back the Pages is a biweekly feature where I spotlight a comic that is not fresh and new. It may have come out a few months ago or even a few years ago. Maybe it was hyped and popular, or maybe it was an underappreciated gem. Whatever the case, it’ll be a great comic that’s well worth a read.

Squirrel Girl Cover

Life is rough.

I get it. There are bills piling up, work deadlines to meet, and God only knows what’s going on in politics. Sometimes, you just need a break. Sometimes, you need something silly and fun to distract you. Sometimes, you need Squirrel Girl.

I feel like if Marvel had tried to make Squirrel Girl relevant a decade ago, they would have given her a grim and gritty reboot complete with a traumatic backstory and skimpy costume. But that’s not the case with The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl by Ryan North and Erica Henderson. It doesn’t just take the silliness of her premise and run with it—it straps on rocket-powered boots and blasts off with it at supersonic speeds. Continue reading Turn Back the Pages: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl

Turn Back the Pages: Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant

Turn Back the Pages is a biweekly feature where I spotlight a comic that is not fresh and new. It may have come out a few months ago or even a few years ago. Maybe it was hyped and popular, or maybe it was an underappreciated gem. Whatever the case, it’ll be a great comic that’s well worth a read.

Delilah Dirk Cover

I seem to be reading and writing a lot about ladies with swords lately. That’s not a problem, just an observation.

The latest swordswoman I want to share with you is Delilah Dirk, early 19th century adventurer and troublemaker. She’s been traveling the world from a young age, learning all sorts of useful skills like archery, acrobatics, and no less than 47 sword-fighting techniques. When our story begins, she finds herself in Constantinople, and that’s where she meets the Turkish lieutenant, Erdemoglu Selim: Continue reading Turn Back the Pages: Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant

Turn Back the Pages: Empowered

Turn Back the Pages is a biweekly feature where I spotlight a comic that is not fresh and new. It may have come out a few months ago or even a few years ago. Maybe it was hyped and popular, or maybe it was an underappreciated gem. Whatever the case, it’ll be a great comic that’s well worth a read.

Empowered Cover

Superheroes are sexy.

That’s not news to anyone. The tight spandex. The peak physical fitness. The contractually-obligated shirtless scene in every Marvel movie:

Shirtless Cap Gif

But for the longest time, comic book publishers seemed to think that “sexy” equaled a superheroine in an impractical costume twisted in a weird position to put both her boobs and butt on display. Combine that with some truly unfortunate storylines and shallow characterization, and it’s no wonder comics sometimes get a bad reputation for their treatment of female characters.

On paper, Empowered would seem like one of the worst examples of this. Its main character, the superheroine Empowered, gets her extraordinary abilities from her costume—a ridiculously sheer bodysuit that doesn’t hide anything. It also gets ripped in battle a lot, which not only exposes her but leaves her powerless. And so she regularly ends up captured by supervillains and put in bondage.

Sounds terrible, right?

But it’s actually incredibly well-done, and can be sexy, hilarious, and at times, tragic. Honestly, there’s nothing else like it in superhero media. Here’s what makes it so good: Continue reading Turn Back the Pages: Empowered

Turn Back the Pages: Young Avengers

Turn Back the Pages is a biweekly feature where I spotlight a comic that is not fresh and new. It may have come out a few months ago or even a few years ago. Maybe it was hyped and popular, or maybe it was an underappreciated gem. Whatever the case, it’ll be a great comic that’s well worth a read.

Young Avengers Cover

Superheroes save the world. Thanks goodness they’re around, or we’d all be dead, right? But the thing is, sometimes superheroes save us from a threat they created in the first place, and if it weren’t for the hero, we’d all be fine.

Think Avengers: Age of Ultron. Nice job inventing a killer robot, Iron Man.

This is what kicks off the plot in Young Avengers: Style > Substance. Billy Kaplan, formerly the teen hero Wiccan, uses his incredibly strong yet untrained magical powers to bring his boyfriend Teddy’s mother back from the dead, and he pulls it off with no negative consequences whatsoever.

Just kidding. There are awful, horrifying consequences. As Kid Loki puts it, it’s “terribad.” Continue reading Turn Back the Pages: Young Avengers

Turn Back the Pages: Marvel Holiday Special 2005

Happy holidays, everyone! I hope you’ve all been good little girls and boys this year, because Santa Claus Santron is coming to town, and he’s got neural disruptors and a thirst to kill all humans.

Santron Image

Ultron is Santa Claus, and the Avengers are on his naughty list.

Really, that’s all I should have to say about this comic. If that premise doesn’t get you excited, then your heart is three sizes too small. But why stop there? Let’s get into all the delightfully absurd detail of why “Yes Virginia, There is a Santron” is the comic you need to read this Christmas.

It all starts with Virginia Hanlon, a young woman who got bullied for believing in Santa Claus as a kid (which, yeah, is pretty relatable). So as an adult, she builds a robot Santa to make the world a happier place (which is…less relatable). Unfortunately, some of the robot parts she used belonged to an old Ultron model, so when Robot Santa comes online, the first thing he does is fly off to kill the Avengers. Continue reading Turn Back the Pages: Marvel Holiday Special 2005