Minx and Me
Submitted by Faith on September 25, 2008 - 11:09
(The following is a poorly thought out ramble. I hope you enjoy it.)
People far more knowledgeable than I am are posting eloquently about this right now, but to recap, DC has cancelled its Minx line of graphic novels (were they for girls or not for girls?). Articles here, here and here.
Here is my experience with Minx:
In 2007 I went to my very first comic book convention, where I bumped into Shelly Bond. Or rather, Dave Roman, at a table next to mine, pointed at her, said "that's her" and over I went, literally bounding up in a fit of ... uh, god knows, shouting "HI!" She'd picked up one of the previews I had for Zombies Calling (this was all before it'd been published) and seemed interested in my work. We had a nice meeting and over the next few months, worked on a pitch together for the Minx line. I was pretty thrilled by the whole thing (y'know, my very first convention and I met an editor from The Big Two who liked my work), and was really hopeful that I'd get the job. For one thing, the money was more than enough to pay off my student loan, something I was desperate for. Also, the job seemed to come with a good amount of exposure, and I wanted to take the next step in my career, and wasn't sure how to do that. How do you work for bigger companies? How do you get your foot in that door? How do you get an agent? How do you make a living wage doing comics? It seemed like doing a Minx book would be a step in the right direction.
However, it wasn't meant to be. Eventually my communication with Shelly dried up, and I took that as a sign that my pitch had not been what they were looking for, even though I never received an official rejection. I moved on to other things. Got an awesome new project, got an agent, went to San Diego and had fantastic things happen there, and in the meantime did another SLG book. Fortunately for me, because I'd spent time working on that Minx pitch (which had evolved quite a bit since I'd sent it off to DC), I (and my agent) had something in hand to show people at San Diego, and that ended up working out really well for me. So I'm grateful for that. I probably wouldn't have had something ready to go if the Minx pitch hadn't happened. It also showed me that just because one avenue of publishing dries up, it doesn't necessarily mean that project is dead forever. It could find a new home. Maybe even a better one.
I'm disappointed the line is dead for one reason, and it's an alarmist reason, so maybe I shouldn't pay it any mind: I am worried this will contribute to that crap opinion in the comic book industry that girls don't read comics. And that comics starring girls don't sell. Which infuriates me, because I'm a female comic reader, and I feel that within the scope of traditional comic book publishers there isn't much geared towards me or my female friends, MANY of whom itch for comics to read. So instead they (and I) read manga or books published by graphic novel imprints of traditional book publishers. Granted, maybe I shouldn't give a crap about what the comic book publishers do. If they want to exclusively cater to 30 something white men, I can't stop them. And I can choose not to read their books. But I love comics and I would hate to see the comic book publishers devolve into complete self-absorption, until they collapse in on themselves, taking their readers with them.
Anyway, so that was my experience. And I enjoyed a few of their books, certainly. I liked Re-gifters, The Plain Janes, Kimmie 66 and Emiko Superstar a lot. I didn't like Burnout or The New York Four. The rest I don't remember very well. I hope the creators find new and better things. Many of them are fantastic and deserve it. Others ... are just not my cup of tea.