The stereotype of a ComicCon attendee is a dude who closely resembles Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons. But in reality, there are plenty of women who love a good con, and GeekGirlCon is for them. Now in its second year, the Seattle-born convention celebrates great women in geek culture with artist booths, cosplay, gaming tables, GeekGirlConnections networking events, a Masquerade costume contest, and panel discussions. Lots of panel discussions—with top talent in science, TV writing, graphic and video game art, and a real-life superhero or two.
Here are eight panels we'd check out at GeekGirlCon:
10:30am – Steampunk Sewing: From Newbie Basics to Expert Techniques
Yes, there's a panel at a comics and gaming convention about sewing. Get over it. Learn how to make intricately detailed steampunk outfits—a mashup of Victorian-era and futurist looks—with vintage sewing patterns and thrifty tips.
1:30 – “Go Make Me A Sandwich”: Barriers to Women’s Participation in Online and Fan Spaces
Anyone who's ever tried to play a match on Xbox Live knows there are plenty of a-holes out there willing to lob sexist comments at any female gamer who logs on. From the cliched “Go make me a sandwich” to horrible things that can't be typed here, women have it rough. Panelists discuss how women should approach participating in online spaces and how to stand up to gender discrimination online.
2:30 – Spotlight on Corrinne Yu
Microsoft game programmer and designer Corrinne Yu thrives in a male-dominated field. She's currently working as principal engine programmer for the upcoming Halo 4 and was named one of "The Ten Most Influential Women in Games of the Past Decade" by Kotaku. We tried to talk to her for our Fiendish Conversation series but Microsoft PR shot us down. Thanks guys!
3:00 – Get Your Game On: Shop Talk with the Ladies of BioWare
Female programmers from BioWare, the studio behind the hugely successful Mass Effect series, will take part in a Q&A. They're sure to get questions about development, getting a job in the industry, the questionable (from a feminist perspective) curvaceousness of their female characters, and the incredibly controversial ending of Mass Effect 3 (prepare for spoilers).
3:30 – Jane Espenson and Husbands—A Comedy for the Marriage Equality Age
There aren't a lot of TV writers who've left their mark on as much of nerdom as Jane Espenson. She's best known for her work on Battlestar Galactica, but she's also writen episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Firefly, Game of Thrones, Dollhouse, and more. She currently works on Husbands, a web comedy about a newlywed couple, and ABC's Once Upon a Time.
UPDATED (time corrected) 5:30 – Women in Westeros: Is Game of Thrones Sexist?
If you've heard one thing about HBO's Game of Thrones (and George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire fiction series it's based on), it's that it's a fantasy show (swords, dragons, etc). If you've heard two things about Game of Thrones, it's that it's a fantasy show with a lot of naked women. Heck, Saturday Night Live made an entire digital short out of it. So do the books and show critique the sexist culture in the land of Westeros, or are they actually just glorifying sexist messages? Discuss.
10:30am – Why Men Write Women Poorly, and How to Get a Clue
Comic author Greg Rucka (the only male GeekGirlCon guest) examines why so many of his writing bretheren struggle to write strong, believable female characters. By delving into character development theory, Rucka hopes to show aspiring writers (regardless of their gender) what pitfalls to avoid.
2:30 – Womanthology Continues
Last summer Renae De Liz set up a Kickstarter page to raise funds for Womanthology, a collection of more than 140 comics created by female artists. The project quickly became the biggest comic success in Kickstarter history, bringing in nearly $110,000. A year later, Womanthology looks to move ahead with new editions highlighting the best work by women in the field.
Aug 11 & 12, Washington State Convention Center, single-day pass $30, two-day pass $45