Smalerie interviews LadiesCon guest Kristen Gudsnuk right before the convention. Listen as they discuss Kristen’s comics, magical girls, and upcoming comics.
In just a few days it will be time for LadiesCon 2018. If you are reading this we hope to see you there. If you aren’t familiar with LadiesCon, here’s the main scoop.
LadiesCon is a one-day celebration of women of all kinds and their work in comic books, science fiction, fantasy, cosplay, and many other realms of pop culture. This Con is for everyone, with a focus on creators who identify as women, non-binary, LGBTQ, and people of color, plus local artists. Our goal is to shift the ratios that you usually see at comic cons. And perhaps the most important thing, admission is free!
We work hard all year fundraising to make LC free because 1. we don’t want admission cost to be a deterrent, and 2. we want you to come spend your hard earned money on our amazing vendors and guests. We also couldn’t do this without help from our sponsors, Rockland Trust, Candlewick Press, and of course, Comicazi.
So – planning your day. The Con is located at The Armory in Somerville MA, and starts at 11am. That is, unless you go for an early access VIP entry ticket. Early Access starts at 10am. You get some breakfast, a swag bag, and less crowded access to vendors, guests, and the ’66 Batmobile. It also is a helpful part of our fundraising efforts, with 100% of the ticket price going right into LadiesCon 2019.
OK – you have arrived at the Con. Stop at the Welcome table in the lobby and say hi, then continue on to the Con floor. Pause a moment and take it in, there is a lot to see both upstairs and down (there is both an elevator and stairs to get to the balcony area). Visit creators at their tables and enjoy their work, chat with them if you are comfortable doing so, and if something really strikes your fancy, make a purchase. Supporting creators is the best way to make your voice heard about what you want in the industry. Pro-tip: not all vendors take cards so bring some cash if you are able. There are ATMs down the road.
Our special guests are easy to find (everything is pretty easy to find since we are a one room con). Stop by and see Marjorie Liu – Eisner and Hugo award winner and author of Monstress, winner of two Einser awards and artist on Squirrel Girl Erica Henderson, Kristen Gudsnuk – creator of Henchgirl and the graphic novel Making Friends, Ming Doyle – writer and artist on Constantine and artist for DC Comics upcoming Anatomy of a Metahuman. Just added: Jason Badower. His covers for DC Comics include: The Flash, Arrow, Supergirl, Captain Atom, Gotham City Garage and Krypton. Jason also wrote a Wonder Woman story that featured her officiating a gay wedding.
As if all that wasn’t enough, we also have panels happening both upstairs and down. Info can be found on the LC website panel page, and here’s a schedule to help you plan:
We hope to see you in LadiesCon 2018. We do this for you and need your support to keep doing it. Let’s make an amazing day for each other!
Back in July, Smalerie shared a recipe for a hamburger. What it lacked in deliciousness it made up for in creativity and in its physical resemblance to the product that inspired it – the Cthulhu burger in Kristen Gudsnuk’s Henchgirl. At the time, she mentioned she wasn’t going to review the book; the focus of the post was the horrifying delicacy she’d created. Since then, we’ve discussed the book at Comicazi Book Club, and hosted Kristen as one of our guests of honor at LadiesCon.
So it seems like a good time to review the book and let you know that if you haven’t jumped on this bandwagon, you should.
I once had a teacher in grade school who told me that she loved to read my essays because she could tell that I was enthusiastic about learning and the subjects I would choose to write about. There was just one problem though. If everything I wrote about was “the absolute worst” or the “absolute best” that wasn’t going to give me a lot of space or freedom to really make careful and thoughtful comparisons. So why is this little anecdote important to my recap of LadiesCon 2017? Because I’m about to throw that advice out the window and use superlatives like crazy. Wanna know why? Because LadiesCon 2017 was THE. ABSOLUTE. BEST.
For those of you familiar with our event last year, the first LadiesCon was essentially a testing ground to see if our vision of an inclusive Con would even be something that the community wanted to see. In a donated office space, we managed to catch lightning in a bottle and learned just how dedicated the Boston comics community was to making an event that was for everyone.
This year, we took that to a whole new level. We tripled the number of panels and doubled our space, guests, and vendors. We reached out to artists and creators who were making things that were original, beautiful, and even a little terrifying. The response from the community was once again warm and enthusiastic, and together we created a colorful and vibrant Con.
We are less than 2 months away from LadiesCon and things are getting crazy. Crazy in the best ways possible, but still quite a lot of twists, turns, and surprises. It’s during these times that we need to make sure we’re taking the opportunity to take a deep breath, brush up on your R’lyehian, and praise the Elder Gods.
If you haven’t read Kristen Gudsnuk’s Henchgirl, you should really do one of the following: a) buy it now so you have a copy for Kristen to sign at LadiesCon or b) buy it at LadiesCon and so you have a copy for Kristen to sign. Ok ok, I know I’m really driving the point a bit hard here, but there’s a reason we reached out to Kristen as a guest.
Without turning this post into a review, I will tell you this much. Henchgirl is such a charming and funny story. It’s filled with such great visual gags and puns that when I found myself faced with these panels…I knew immediately what I had to do.
Yes, I needed my very own Cthulu Burger!
Normally when I do these Food and Fandom posts, I like to post a recipe. I’m not going to do that this time for a few reasons. The main reason is that there are times when (due to the either the complications of your project or the limits of your own culinary skills) you know that you’re going to have to choose between something that tastes great but is visually plain or something that looks amazing but will NEVER WANT TO EAT AGAIN. I chose and well, um…you’ll see.
When making a burger based on Cthulu, octopus was the most obvious choice. I was able to find frozen cleaned octopus in my regular supermarket quite easily, as well as a recipe that would allow me to cook it in my sous vide. I had never cooked octopus before and using such a controlled temperature was a pretty surefire way to ensure that the octopus would be soft and tender rather than horrible and chewy.
So I started with something that looked like this:
Did some stuff to it:
And hours later, I found myself with this:
The recipe also informed me that I should clean, then either grill or fry up the octopus to get the legs and tentacles nice and crispy before serving. So I did that too.
Next, I laid out my ingredients on my sacrificial altar/cutting board and got to work assembling what might very well be my most horrifying creation yet.
BEHOLD AND TREMBLE WITH FEAR YOU FOOLS! *warning: prolonged exposure to this slideshow may result in madness
I’m really proud of how I was able to get his worshipers to bleed from the eyes just right!
I delayed as long as I could taking these pictures. It wasn’t because I didn’t think I would like octopus. I’ve had it before and liked it a lot. It was the idea of eating it with bread and the other burger fixings that made me start to back away towards the door.
I mean, does this cross section look appetizing to you?
Since I wasn’t about to go at this alone, The Boy and I each took a half, bit in, and well…
Do I get points for accuracy if it tastes like it’s been asleep under a lost city in the Pacific ocean for thousands of years?
Ok, so maybe it wasn’t that bad. But dang, it tasted fishy. And the soft octopus with even softer bread was not something I found enjoyable in any way. No, it was not good. Nope. Nope. Nope.
In the case that you’re wondering what went wrong, I chatted with Tiny Doom and she believes it was a problem with the octopus recipe that I used. My recipe said that marinating the octopus before cooking was optional, so I skipped that step to save myself a little time. Tiny Doom has cooked octopus with great success but has always let it braise in red wine first. Perhaps that’s the key to removing the fishy taste? Maybe my frozen octopus wasn’t all that great? I’ll probably give cooking octopus a shot again, but will use a very different recipe.
Still, Lord Cthulu makes quite the dashing figure as a burger.