Thursday, September 22, 2011

What I Would Do at Geek Girl Con, Part I

While I’m in New Orleans in October, Seattle will be playing host to the first Geek Girl Con on October 8 and 9an event described by the GGC’s press kit as “dedicated to promoting awareness of and celebrating the contribution and involvement of women in all aspects of the sciences, science fiction, comics, gaming and related Geek culture through conventions and events that emphasize both the historic and ongoing contribution and influence of women in thisculture.” Good enough!

Honestly, this is a Con I’d love to go to, and a great one to get in on the ground floor of, because I have a feeling it’s going to go huge, fast. Unfortunately the scheduling conflict with the Popular Culture in the South Conference (you didn’t think I’d be completely self-promotion free here did you?), as well as a lamentably tight travel budget, means that I will have to miss Geek Girl Con. However, this does nothing to stop me from idly fantasizing about going, and what I might do while there.

So, if I were able to attend Geek Girl Con:

I would seek out Chase Masterson and ask her to autograph the largest boxed ear-wax removal system I could find (fellow ST:DS9 fans will understand).

After a Friday night in the hotel room spent with a highlighter and the GGC Programming Guide, I’d get up Saturday morning and start hitting panels:

10:00 – 11:00: Star Trek & Beyond with Chase Masterson. The actor who launched her career as Leeta on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and who now continues to act, sing, and produce speaks on fan-activism among genre fans.

11:00 – 12:30: The Heroine: Journey, Culture and Narrative. Haviva Avirom (mod.), Sara Freeman, Catherine Bailey, and Erin Lovejoy-Guron discuss the heroine’s journey in popular culture from Claudette Colbert to Wonder Woman to RPGs. I think I’d come prepared to ask about their takes on Haley Atwell’s character Peggy Carter in Captain America: the First Avenger.

12:30 – 1:00: Some kind of junk food lunch.

1:00 – 2:00: Trina Robbins on Tarpé Mills and Miss Fury. I don’t know Tarpé Mills but the programming guide makes me want to: “Trina Robbins, ground-breaking herstorian and comic author, introduces you to one of the greatest female creators you never knew existed. Author Tarpé Mills’ created Marla Drake, aka Miss Fury, has been described as the “grandmother that Buffy Summers and Sydney Bristow didn’t know they had.” Time for a history lesson!” I will even be willing to overlook the twinge that “herstorian” gives me. For now.

2:00-2:30: Shopping for cool stuff, particularly books!

2:30-4:00: History of the Universe as Told by Wonder Woman. Kristy Guevara-Flanagan (mod.), Gail Simone, Trina Robbins, Jennifer K. Stuller, Mike Madrid. Footage from Guevara-Flanagan’s documentary History of the Universe as Told by Wonder Woman will be shown, and the panelists will discuss our obsession with superheroes, and the evolution of female empowerment in the culture. Note historians Trina Robbins and Jen Stuller. Jen is one of the most delightful, brilliant people it’s ever been my pleasure to know, and both women are applying the historian’s art to fields too long neglected by traditional historiography. Definitely a professional interest in this one for me, but also (hopefully) a chance to catch up with someone I haven’t seen face-to-face in too long.

4:00 – 5:00: Character Studies: Geek Girls in Popular Culture. Jennifer K. Stuller (mod. [okay, obviously we’ll have to catch up later, Jen!]), Amy Berg, Javier Grillo-Marxuach, Sara Kuhn, Jessica Mills, and Stephanie Thorpe take a look at geek girls in film, TV, comics, etc. They’ll also discuss the status of geek girls in our culture. Good stuff.

5:00 – 5:30: Snack? Sit dazed for half an hour? Cat-nap?

5:30 – 6:30: Whedonistas. Naturally. Teresa Jusino (mod.), Jane Espenson, Nancy Holder, Mariah Huener discuss Joss Whedon’s work and the impact his shows have had on them, on the culture, and on Whdeon’s fans, who have become some of the world’s most active, particularly for women’s rights.

6:30 – 7:00: Dinner. See Lunch above.

7:00 – 8:30: Viscera Film Fest. I’ll let GGC’s program guide have this one: “Heidi Honeycutt hosts a mini-Viscera Film Fest. They will screen selected horror short films created, written, directed, produced, acted, goredup, and designed by women. You’ve never seen horror like this before. Operating since 2007, Viscera is committed to expanding opportunities for female horror creators.” How frakkin’ cool does this sound? I know, right!

9:00 – 11:00: Whedonesque Burlesque. “Man, if you gotta ask, you’ll never know.”

Then, I’d stagger back to the hotel, collapse into bed, and rest up for Sunday’s events… Which will constitute Part II of this little exercise in imagination. Until then, Reader’s Mine, maybe some of you might need to book a flight or two to Seattle, eh? Failing that, you can show your support forGeek Girl Con, by donating here.

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