Midwest BSFA Organizes Panel for Virtual Convention

michigan magick & machineMidwest BSFA members and supporters will participate in a panel called Steampunk Aesthetics Through A Black Lens on Saturday, July 25, at 1 p.m. EST¬†as part of the virtual convention Michigan Magick and Machine (July 24-26)! Black people and other POC interested in steampunk are doing so within a Eurocentric framework that doesn’t really take us into account. Panelists will explore their character back stories and how they navigate the space while still managing to have fun. Continue reading “Midwest BSFA Organizes Panel for Virtual Convention”

Diasporic Blackness and Revising Steampunk Characters

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Art by Laanz

I’ve been thinking a lot about the rift between black Americans and continental Africans, and how more visible it is these days, thanks to social media. From Seren Aishitemasu’s¬†slightly unhinged but still insightful YouTube videos about continental Africans’ appropriation of black American culture for profit and fame to the online grumblings from continental Africans about¬†Black Panther/Coming to America¬†mashups earlier this year to Luvvie Ajayi starting what felt like a diaspora war on Twitter last week when she tried to talk slick about Tevin Campbell, I’m seeing more clearly the fissures in the already fragile foundation on which black Americans and continental Africans stand. As someone who does steampunk from a multicultural perspective centering on a¬† West African narrative, this all makes me think about changes I could make to my character’s backstory.***

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Interview with Cosplayer/Podcaster Sistah Geek

CqWyUBBVIAEylzrCosplayer/geeklanthropist Sistah Geek, co-host of the Wakanda IV Lyfe podcast, is co-presenting a steampunk character building workshop with our fearless leader at the Midwest Ethnic Convention for Comics and Arts (MECCACon) at 11 a.m. on Sept. 16! We talked to her about comics, steampunk, not letting mansplainers drain you and being a geek who gives back.

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Why You Need A Sensitivity Reader (aka Don’t Ask Me To Do Emotional Labor For Free)

black woman readingA few months ago, a white author posted a comment in one of the Facebook groups I moderate seeking a beta reader for the steampunk story he was writing. Because his main character is Asian and he clearly is not, he was interested in finding a person of color to read the story. My response was “hire an Asian sensitivity reader.” Continue reading “Why You Need A Sensitivity Reader (aka Don’t Ask Me To Do Emotional Labor For Free)”