Friday, May 15, 2015

PR Special Edition: SAM MAGGS Guest Post

Poisoned Rationality Special  Edition

Welcome to another Poisoned Rationality Special Edition!  Today we have Sam Maggs - author, blogger, coolest person you could ever hope to meet ;) She's here discussing her new book THE FANGIRL'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY and some of the nerdy influences from growing up.

Fanfic, cosplay, cons, books, memes, podcasts, vlogs, OTPs and RPGs and MMOs and more—it’s never been a better time to be a girl geek. The Fangirl’s Guide to the Galaxy is the ultimate handbook for ladies living the nerdy life, a fun and feminist take on the often male-dominated world of geekdom. With delightful illustrations and an unabashed love for all the in(ternet)s and outs of geek culture, this book is packed with tips, playthroughs, and cheat codes for everything from starting an online fan community to planning a convention visit to supporting fellow female geeks in the wild.

Fangirl Flashbacks: 
The Nerdy Media That Influenced Me the Most
My parents were always big into nerd culture, but I had to come to it myself in a lot of ways, too. While I was writing Fangirl’s Guide, I really had to examine the media that had the largest impact on me when I was just a budding geek – and here are the things that stuck out the most. You might want to go check them all out, too.


I came to Stargate SG-1 when I was around twelve years old, and it was my first major fandom – fanfic, forums, and all. I think what got to me about this show was Sam Carter, who not only was a hard-core military bad-ass, but was also an astrophysicist. It was the first time I’d seen a show that really demonstrated to me that Strong Female Characters didn’t just have to be physically strong – they could also be super smart and also go into space! My very first convention was a Gatecon, and it was a lovely entry into the world of fandom. Stargate forever.

Tamora Pierce

If you haven’t read any of Pierce’s books, stop reading this article and immediately go get the first book set in the medieval fantasy world of Tortall, Alanna: The First Adventure. Imagine A Song of Ice and Fire, but if there were several different series set in Westeros and they all had amazing female protagonists, including two lady knights, a WOC demigod who can speak with animals, a spy master, and a slum cop. Oh, and she wrote them ten years before Westeros was even a glimmer in GRRM’s eye. These books ignited my love for fantasy worlds, magic, romance, and awesome kick-butt ladies. Go and get some of them right now.

Baldur’s Gate

Sure, I love Nintendo and Super Mario 64, but the first game that I was ever really obsessed with was Baldur’s Gate. An early outing from BioWare (who would go on to develop fan faves like Dragon Age and Mass Effect), Baldur’s Gate was basically a direct adaptation of a tabletop Dungeons & Dragons game onto the small screen. I was so stoked to play a game where I got to choose my gender and be a lady, and it also started my lifelong love of playing rogues or thieves in any sort of fantasy setting (there’s just so many things to hoard!) BeamDog recently released remastered versions of the first and second games, and they’re old school, but they totally hold up. Playing them felt like coming home, cheesy as that might be.

One of my all-time favorite Marvel comics and a great entry into the Marvel universe, the original Runaways came to us from some of the greatest minds in comics, including Brian K. Vaughan, Adrian Alphona (currently the artist on Ms. Marvel), and even Joss Whedon. In this highly-underrated series, a group of teens discover that their parents are members of a collective of supervillains called The Pride, and band together to take their folks down. The book has an incredible cast of female characters (including girls with divers sexualities, races, and body types), and one of them even has a pet velociraptor. You can also find cameos from lots of familiar Marvel faces, like Captain America, which makes the journey into other Marvel comics a little easier.

Sailor Moon
Ah, the DiC English version of Sailor Moon for kids wasn’t the true Sailor Moon, but Serena and Darien hold a special place in my heart just because they were my first introduction to anime and to magical girls. This series was wonderful for showing me that all different kinds of girls could be heroes – the silly klutz, the super-nerd, the marriage-obsessed chef, the family-oriented priestess, the super-star. So often shows or games relegate teams to having just one girl who then has to speak to the experience of all women; not so on Sailor Moon. Revisiting the show on Hulu with subtitles, as it was meant to be watched, has been a highlight of my adult life as well.

What nerdy media influenced you the most growing up? Let me know in the comments, or on Twitter @SamMaggs!

 About the Author
She wrote a book about begin a fangirl, likes Doctor Who, Anime, Books, and---oh fine here's what her GR bio says "Hi friends! I'm Sam Maggs, a writer, televisioner, and geek girl, hailing from the Kingdom of the North (Toronto). Despite my MA in Victorian literature, my writing focuses on geek culture and (sometimes) how it intersects with being a lady."


FANGIRL'S GUIDE Video Trailer:

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