First of all, happy 50th post on this blog! It’s been a journey keeping up with this site of mine and we’ve just gotten started! Thank you for the 500 views as well and let’s shoot for much more!
I’ve been around the creative spaces viewing a ton of black comics, stories and manga and I love all of it. The way we tell tales and spin trauma into a readable medium is a skill that really comes with great experience. I’d like to think that we’d come around and realize that black art doesn’t have to just be from a hurt source, but I’ve been wrong before.
But I’d like to start this by saying: Being a black creator doesn’t mean you need to sound like the average black boomer father figure.
As a creator myself with a majority black cast in my kickstarter manga project, my stories often tell tales of my people existing in the world without the hang ups of society’s ills over skin color. Does that make me better than others who do? No. Does that make them less than valid for choosing to do so?
I want every angle I can get of black-led stories and some will involve the racial history we struggle with here in the US. It’s to be expected, but I’m seeing to many black stories simply keeping with the themes of real life and not branching out to the full escapism of fiction.
Now this doesn’t mean I’ve seen EVERYONE’S projects and can make this astute assumption, but it means I’ve seen enough of it where it’s abundant in the circles I frequent.
I’d love for us to have stories in sci-fi where the black cyberpunk engineer is stuck on moon base filled with violent sentient life forms or maybe a black wizard is stuck with a reluctant hero who won’t arise to his duties. SOMETHING that doesn’t indicate “We’re black and seen as less, but now in TECHNICOLOR!”
And please don’t take this the wrong way and use this for your narrative for “I hate woke comics!” because comics have been JUST that for generations and will continue to do so. I just don’t want us to have to be pigeon-holed as black creatives to just be the people who make “Civil Rights Superheroes” 24/7.
I don’t mean to call out anyone if I did. I just think we need to broaden the spectrum here. Keep creating and keep being excellent!