Stop! Collaborate and Listen

Photograph by Jonas Vincent

I really liked writing about my writing with “Spider-Man In A Flash” and I thought I’d make it a regular thing. I wanted to get myself to write without pressure and write to relieve pressure. With my second year at Women Write About Comics fast approaching this April 1st, it seemed like looking back at the piece that started it all felt fitting especially because it introduced me to one of my favourite people.

But first, the beginning.

I talk about how I got to write for WWAC all the time and I might have even written about it here already but I will discuss it anyways because the beginning! The first time the site caught my attention was with Jamie Kingston’s two part feature:

What’s In A Codename

What’s In A Codename 2: The DC Ladies

Immediately after reading it, I did what I always do when I get excited about something: I tweet at the individuals involved. In this case, it was the WWAC’s twitter account. The mysterious person behind the account thanked me and suggested that I pitch something for the site. I, of course, said maybe but internally, I thought Heh. No way. I have nothing to offer! How could I?

Slowly, I started to follow some of the people who wrote for the site including fancy pants Claire who was (and still is) the features editor. One day, she tweeted about reading a translation of Hidden by Loïc Dauvillier, Marc Lizano and Greg Salsedo (a graphic novel from First Second) which was due to be out in a few weeks. I had gotten an advance copy of it and told her that I a) read it and b) loved it. She responded and even went as far as to ask for my help in finishing a review she was writing for it. Her problem? Trying to get past the introduction. I made some suggestions and then she extended the invite even further: Want to co-write it with me?

Of course, I said yes. It was probably the most interesting collaboration I’ve ever been a part of. I picked up where she left off but also tweaked her introduction. She’d come in after I was done (we were using google doc) and tweaked my parts while flushing out some of my ideas and adding some of her own. We’d go back and forth like this until we had a draft we were happy with. We submitted it to an editor who went through it and made some notes on how to make it clearer (Gotta love editors!). It came out great and surprisingly, it sounded like one voice rather than two distinct ones.

Collaborative Review: Hidden, Out Today

Looking back now, I surprised that a brilliant writer like Claire (she’s pretty badass) would trust me to co-write that review. She became one of the most supportive people I’ve ever known and the greatest of friends. That piece would go on to give me the confidence I needed to pitch my first feature which also happened to be the first time I pitched anything.

I'm awesome gif

– A.

Published by Ardo Omer


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