Another key tool for playing by our own rules is Patreon. Wendy Xu told me about it a few years ago and now, nearly every indie comics creator I know has one. (Go support her Patreon, by the way, especially if you like witch stories!) This is probably already old news to many, but it bears a reiteration, especially for people like me, people who rarely use social media. For the longest time, I was out of touch. Sure, I backed a few Kickstarters and used the pre-populated tweet about backing them, but I wasn’t using my own voice enough. And I wasn’t keyed into Twitter enough. As you can tell, I’m more of a long-form kind of gal.
A lot of my friends aren’t very “plugged in.” Perhaps it’s because we were born on the cusp of the Millennial generation. We lived our childhood without computers and smartphones. But that may just be another excuse. I now more deeply understand that whether you are a marginalized person or an “ally,” if you want to change the world for the better, you have to go beyond buying a book or supporting a Kickstarter, you have to join in on the conversation.
But enough self-deprecation. What I’m trying to say is, while social media can be exhausting, while hearing about the news can bring up anger and pain, and while taking the time to write an Amazon review can feel like a burden on top of all the other life shit we have to deal with, it’s worth it. Change is work. I have to remind myself of that constantly.
My hero, may she rest in power, Grace Lee Boggs, said that “we are the leaders we’ve been looking for” and it’s so easy to lose sight of that. To be sure, everyone is entitled to take time for self care, but only we can put in the hours. To help diverse creators get more of their work out there, we need to be a part of the news that matters to us. These are not new ideas or insights. Much like the power of a single Amazon review, this is another voice that will help amplify the chorus and hopefully inspire others to do the same.