Friday, November 16, 2007

Fangirl Fridays: The "Goodbye To Comics" One-Year Anniversary

It has been pointed out to me that it's been exactly one year since I wrote "Goodbye To Comics."

What a difference a year makes, huh?

The fact that I am more active, integrated, and successful in the comics world now than I ever was when I was officially "in" the comics world kind of baffles me a little bit.

It's like, some people can play within the confines of a very set group of said and unsaid rules and really be successful at it. In my twenties, I tried to do that and succeed in the comic book industry. I failed. The more I tried to follow the "rules," the more I tried not to make any waves, the more I tried to follow DECORUM -- the worse my life became.

And when I finally busted out and expressed myself and did the very thing I was not "supposed" to do -- my life got radically better.

You know who my idols are? Richard Pryor, George Carlin, Andy Kaufman, Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, Margaret Cho, Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock. My biggest fault in life was that I didn't embrace the true part of myself who looked up to these people. Instead, I was that chick with the little voice in "Police Academy." I lost a lot of time.

Thankfully, with this blog and Friends of Lulu, I really feel as if I have been granted another chance. A lot has changed. I am very happy.

And thanks to the majority of you for reacting as kind and understanding and empathetic as you did to "Goodbye To Comics." After the blog hit, I spent a few days avoiding the Internet entirely because, quite frankly, I was afraid I was just going to get laughed at or hated or whatnot. Writing those posts was a very out-of-character thing for me to do.

I'm glad I did it.

PS: The irony of The Comic Reporter's interview with ex-Wizard staffer Rick Marshall running today is not lost on me.


  1. You are part of a wake-up call that comics (& through the extension of overlap, geekery in general) needs to hear. Good for you.

  2. Val,

    I've made no secret of the fact that you're my hero.

    You express yourself with consistent wit and honesty. You're willing to take unpopular viewpoints and you defend them with grace.

    You rock, and I come here first every day.

    It was Goodbye to Comics that brought me here, and that was a painful read. You said things that needed to be said, and even though it might not have been the wisest thing you ever did for your own well-being, I can't be sorry you did it. I'm glad you aren't either.

    I'm glad that you are doing so very well, and I'm glad someone with your flair and enthusiasm is heading up Lulu.


  3. Like so many I started reading this blog with the first part of goodbye to comics and have been reading it ever since.

    This blog has become a wonderful spot of sanity in the mostly insane world of the comics blogosphere.

    Hope we get to see the second anniversary

  4. now you gotta come to CAPE in Dallas and spread your message. :)

  5. I read you regularly though *very* rarely comment; however, let me break out of that mold today to say congratulations on the anniversary, and more importantly on the great path your life is on right now.

  6. I read frequently and only recently began commenting.

    I enjoy this blog as an intelligent discourse on comics, even if I don't always agree with you.

    Congratulations on a year of great dialogue!

  7. Hi, this is the first time I am posting a comment on your blog, but I felt very strongly I had to thank you for something.

    I started reading the blog fairly recently, discovered it via that comment Rich Johnston did in LITG a few weeks ago.
    Read the entire “Goodbye to Comics” thread in one sitting, and not only loved it, but it CHANGED me.

    Not to get into my whole life story here, but although as a young guy I used to be largely pro-women, for the last few years I began having a more "male-dominant-mouth-breather-sexist-crap" take on life, and reading your blog made me not only realize I had changed in that way but also that I did so because I was still suffering from the same depression I went into after my mother’s death about six years ago.
    I honestly thought I had overcome that depression a long time ago, but reading those posts, and your entire blog for that matter, made me think about my life and realize I didn’t.

    Went back into therapy and every day I feel a little better. And not only my thoughts, but also MY LIFE is starting to improve… Getting back on track.

    Just thought you should know.

    Thank you very much.

  8. I read and comment all the damn time because this blog is awesome, has been from the very emotional, raw beginning and continues its awesomeness to this day in a lighter, happier place. Congratulations on keeping it going and actually putting into practice what everyone else just talks about!

  9. Oh... and fantastic idols list! One of my happiest childhood memories is of skipping church after Sunday school and finding a Richard Pryor 8-track walking home that day.

  10. As a relatively newly affirmed feminist ally, I wish you all the best. Your posts keep me sane, and let me know that I'm not the only one in the world that thinks this industry is in a mess.

    As I move towards becoming a father, I want the industry that I grew up with to become more responsible and represent women as more than just play things in skirts.

    Keep up the good work Valerie, and if you are ever in the UK my wife and I very much want to come to the convention and thank you for your advocacy for change in the industry.

  11. YAY!!! I'm very happy you did stop playing by the rules and did speak up! You're blog is one of the best things ever to happen to comics!

  12. When I heard that there was a longer, manuscript version of "Goodbye to Comics," I couldn't wait to read it. "That would be great!" I thought. "Entertaining, insightful commentary on institutional sexism paired with a true-life hard luck story! Yay!"

    But then... I thought about it. And I realized that was a) a skeezy reaction and b) the book wasn't, for a large part, about that. And... that more important than what was written, was what the act of writing it had meant for you.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is that GtoC: the Book would've been a great read. But I don't care if I never see it- you're in a happy place now. That's the real point- the bastards couldn't break ya. Living a good life- the real activism? Maybe.

    Anyway. Go you, is all I meant. Happy blogaversary!

  13. Richard Pryor, George Carlin, Andy Kaufman, Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, Margaret Cho, Dave Chappelle, Chris Rock. My biggest fault in life was that I didn't embrace the true part of myself who looked up to these people.

    Hard to go wrong with idols like that, isn't it? Keep up the great work you're doing, and never doubt that you've already changed things for the better.

  14. I never comment here, but I wanted to throw a 'bravo' your way...and 10 cool points for the Andy Kaufman mention.