I’ve been trying to get my husband, Ryan, to go to Paris with me for years. Horrible stories about rudeness, free-roaming cats, and lack of attention to what we Americans would consider proper food handling and hygiene had turned him off of the French.

But on a business trip last year he found himself having dinner in a centuries-old farmhouse in Bordeaux. And he tasted the bread. And that marvelous French butter.

And I think the experience may have piqued his interest.

Of course, he’s also traveled to many places in the past decade: Norway and Korea, Germany and England, Australia and Japan – he’s become accustomed to, adept even, at embracing different cultures with grace (or at the very least, professional patience). Some of these places we’ve been able to visit together. But Paris wasn’t yet one of them.

A Surprise for Zazie

On our first date – nearly 13 years ago – we’d sat at the B&O on Capitol Hill, ate cake, and chatted about our favorite books. He said I reminded him of Zazie, the eponymous heroine of Raymond Queneau’s Zazie dans le Metro.

Zazie is a potty-mouthed, smarty-pants little girl who on a visit to her uncle in Paris for the weekend only wants to do one thing – ride the metro.

But the metro is on strike.

This, naturally, pisses Zazie off to no end.

“Oh, the dirty bastards!” Zazie exclaims. “Oh, the buggers! To think they’d pull a trick like that one me! . . . Oh shit, it gives me a real pain.”

Ryan said that the book was hard to find, and that he would procure me a copy. Procure he did, and presented it to me 2 days later on our next date. (He’d had it overnighted from San Francisco.)

A few years later I found out that the book had been adapted into a film and directed by Louis Malle.

I called local gem, Scarecrow Video, and by coincidence, they had just procured a large inventory and had a copy on VHS which I bought and gave to Ryan.

Zazie dans le Metro was recently released by Criterion, and I dropped a hint on Facebook – something of the ZOMG! variety.

Ryan had been informed by his friend, Kristofor, that whenever a woman posts something on the social networking site with a link and a ZOMG! that means she wants it. So – a none too subtle hint it was.

For my birthday, which, by the way, is also the national French independence celebration, Bastille Day, I received a beautiful copy of the film. I hugged it to my chest and said, “Oh, Ryan. Will you promise to go to Paris with me someday?”

“Sure.”

“For reals?”

“For reals.”

“Even though you don’t like the French?”

“Yes, Jen. I promise I will go to Paris with you someday.”

Not believing him in the least I proceeded to check out the interior material of my new DVD. Nestled inside was an envelope addressed to “Zazie.” The card read “Meet me in Paris” and then had the dates 6 December – 13 December.

I couldn’t believe it!!!!! On y va!

*Illustrations by Jacqueline Duheme from Olympia Press edition of Zazie dans Le Metro.

I am so excited – - The first Geekquality podcast is live!

These awesome women were inspired by GeekGirlCon to create their own community to address Feminism, Race, Ability, Gender and Sexuality in Geek Culture. Take a listen, and follow them on Twitter (@geekquality) and Tumblr for more updates on their website and podcasts.

Additionally, Geekquality read Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology in preparation for their first podcast and there is a bonus podcast where I chat it up with Alice Marie and Elyse!

Hey Scoobies! It’s Week 48 of the Great Buffy Rewatch – - and I’m back to discuss Bring on the Night, Showtime, and Potential!

Previous contributions to the Great Rewatch of 2011:

Prophecy Girl

Graduation Day


Tonight’s Miss Representation: Seattle Screening at the SIFF Cinema Uptown is Sold Out! So excited for GeekGirlCon to be screening this in partnership with SIFF, Reel Grrls, and Women’s Funding Alliance – and honored to have been asked to participate in the post-screening discussion as a panelist. Looking forward to talking about media literacy and activism with a great crowd!!!

The Muppets was wonderful perfect. And, if like me you are a child of the late 1970s/early 80s bring lots and lots of tissues. I was choked up, teary, smiling and clapping through the whole darling thing.

A couple of years ago I had the opportunity to interview Karen Falk, head archivist at The Henson Company, about the Jim Henson Retrospective touring the country through SITES. We chatted at length about Kermit’s inception in 1955 as a glorified sock puppet, Henson’s experimental film work, and how Fraggle Rock was meant to inspire world peace.

“Jim always said that Kermit was the character he felt closest to,” says Falk. “Kermit was very much the center of things – the way Jim was – but not necessarily in control of all these people. Jim was an amazing gatherer of talent and he recognized talent in people and brought them into the fold and let them do their own thing—and Kermit of course does that very much in The Muppet Show.”

I’m honored to be profiled in this month’s “Perspectives: Newsletter of the UW College of Arts & Sciences” – Go Huskies! Yay for CHID Alums! Local famous!

Photo Courtesy of The One True b!X

My first national byline, circa 1994. (St. Clement’s and Hall Middle School newspapers had been local of course.) While my relatively novice, if precocious, contribution to the piece was heavily edited by my co-author, Stuller Sr., it was an important lesson from Master Po to his Grasshopper that all writers must compromise if they want a byline that comes with a paycheck.

Plus, how awesome was my hair?

This is the most phenomenal review of my book yet. It’s an honor and a compliment from someone I’ve only recently *met* online, but someone that I deeply respect.

And, wow, she completely groked my intent. Thank you, Tricia.

‎”The message of the book comes through loud and clear: This is where we were, this is where we are, and here’s my knowledge-base and the brain-trust of a lot of other smart, strong women – now go use it to make things better for all of us. . . .[T]hroughout the course of the book she doesn’t judge women for their tastes or their preferences, or insist that anyone agree with her point by point. Stuller simply lays out her own experiences as a geek girl, ambassador, and historian, then has the bravery to let the reader decide things for herself.”

And it’s accompanied by a thoughtful companion post.

“What Ink-Stained Amazons provides is deep knowledge about past portrayals of women, effective (and not-so-effective) characterization, and the ruts that storytellers get stuck in.

Self-awareness grows as you read the book. Jennifer is very effective at demonstrating the ways that we truly do write what we know in terms of tropes, relationships with our family, and our own internal biases from a lifetime of experience. Once a writer recognizes his or her own bias – yet another form of rut that can trap our storytelling – that is the path to breaking new ground, making the stories better.

Finally, Jennifer’s book reminds everyone that writers must have empathy, for their characters and for their audience. This book should be a must-read for any writer working in genre storytelling. As a resource for women in fantasy and science fiction who are still searching for that sense of who they are, this book will be a big help as well.”

As always – Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors: Superwomen in Modern Mythology is available at Amazon, or your local independent book seller.

We were absolutely thrilled that Jo Jo Stiletto Events brought Whedonesque Burlesque to our inaugural year of GeekGirlCon, and I was personally delighted to be asked to contribute some personal thoughts on Joss Whedon and what the Whedonverse means to me to the program. (Click image to embiggen.)

While I’m still not much of a Tweep (Tweeper? Twitterer?) I was pulled in so many directions over the GeekGirlCon weekend that I missed a lot of content. Thanks to Twitter I was able to catch some of the vibe and response and I am proud to see that we were successful in our mission. You have been inspired, creative juices are flowing, thoughts have been provoked, discussions are continuing, and new friends have been made – we’re feeling it on our end too. Thank you for being part of this and let’s keep with the forward momentum!

Here are some of my favorite tweets from the weekend – from Gail Simone as our incredible cheerleader, to recognition of our hard work and attention to detail, to feminist conversation, to yeah, a little bit of self-promotion. (A girl’s gotta work!)

The Gail
@GailSimone It was lovely to see so many female editors at @geekgirlcon, as well. Smart, funny, talented supportive women. Makes me hopeful.

@GailSimone Dear You People Who Didn’t Attend @geekgirlcon, you have my pity, it was AMAZING.

@GailSimone Hopefully, @geekgirlcon will lead to lots more like it. And there was nothing forced about it, it was an absolute blast, most fun con ever!

@GailSimone @newageamazon I can’t shut up about @geekgirlcon. Everywhere you looked there was music and art and great discussion.

@GailSimone @dcwomenkicknass HA! But it’s true, there’s real art in the design of the con. All the signs and merch for it are stunning and lovely.

@GailSimone Also, it’s a good day when Trina freaking Robbins says amazing things about your Wonder Woman run. Just saying! #happy

@GailSimone @geekgirlcon feels a little bit like being at Woodstock or something–it feels like a game changer, and we’re here to witness it.

@GailSimone This con honestly has some of the best, smartest, and most fun programming I’ve ever seen. It kills me to miss all these panels!

@GailSimone I never want to leave @geekgirlcon.

@GailSimone I want another @geekgirlcon right NOW.

The Ink-Stained Amazons (aka, The “My Publisher Needs to See These”)

@gentlethorns Plane reading: ‘ink-stained amazons and cinematic warriors’. An excellent analysis of female ‘heroes’ in the media (comics, tv + film)…

@lstigerts Fave #geekgirlcon session: “Ink-Stained Amazons & Cinematic Warriors” by @InkAmazon. Insightful. Gave me goosebumps.

@MWSBET Just ordered a copy of Ink-Stained Amazons! Ms Stuller @InkAmazon was one of my favourite panelists at @GeekGirlCon this weekend.

@giasilverman Shout outs to awesome @GeekGirlCon women who blew me away with their talent: @InkAmazon @catehstn @serenangai @geekyjessica Amy Berg

@theonetruebix #GeekGirlCon day two highlights: Batgirls (esp. @kyrax2); Killing Cattiness; @thedoubleclicks, @Molly23, @mariancall ninja gig; @InkAmazon.

@cymerin FANTASTIC presentation by @InkAmazon about Superwomen in Modern Mythology. Can’t wait to read the entire book. #geekgirlcon

@theonetruebix “You’ve all got me teary-eyed. This is such the best audience for this.” – @InkAmazon #GeekGirlCon

@fiainros Media Literacy and Ink Stained Amazon. RT @GeekGirlCon: What were your favorite panels at @GeekGirlCon? #geekgirlcon

@theonetruebix Isis shout-out at @InkAmazon’s panel. #GeekGirlCon #OhMightyIsis

@suzdal Yay, a mention of Olivia from Fringe at the Ink Stained Amazons panel. #geekgirlcon

@geekquality Everyone at Geekquality is reading @InkAmazon ‘s amazing book. “Ink-Stained Amazons and Cinematic Warriors” should be in your hands NOW!
@geekquality @InkAmazon we want your book to be the topic of our first podcast. It’s a great starting point discuss our inspiration for this project!

The Feeling
@bergopolis Really, the whole thing was extraordinary. I’d hate to single out one thing over another. RT @bardic_lady Favourite part of #GeekGirlCon?

@Chrysaora Trina Robbins is fierce! #geekgirlcon

@trinmiller @GeekGirlCon was a safe space to be a geeky girl where you didn’t have to prove your geekiness or be oogled constantly.

@GeekGirlCon Thank you to all the panelists and guests that attended@GeekGirlCon! We truly appreciate the knowledge you shared with us & the attendees.

@Melhowrad I feel like being on staff for such a great and successful con has gave me a new type of confidence. #GeekGirlCon

@heaven4heroes Thanks @GeekGirlCon for a fun time in Seattle. Loved meeting female comic book fans! You are out there!

@lamemage #GeekGirlCon also wins for having the most upbeat lanyards. So yellow!

@shibuyababy <3 RT @TiredFairy: So #GeekGirlCon was pretty unbelievablyamazingwow. Show sold out, the panels were packed, conversations were incredible.

@InkAmazon @GeekGirlCon would not exist without everyone who cares about it - And that includes You. We are making this community together.

@1941WonderWoman "@GailSimone: I never want to leave @GeekGirlCon."---Yeah, this will go down as the start of a revolution. #GeekGirlCon

@theonetruebix The passion of @kyrax2 is infectious. Long-term, @DCComicsignores her and the demographic she reflects at their peril. #GeekGirlCon

@fried_madness "I deal with being a geek by knowing I'm having so much more fun than everyone else" -Belle Holder #geeksraisinggeeks #GeekGirlCon

@GeekGirlCon "There are great rewards. And it's amazing what your influence can be halfway around the world." - Stephanie Olge @cinebooks #GeekGirlCon

@merismullaley #geekgirlcon may be the most meaningful geek experience in my recent memory. Thank you @GeekGirlCon team!!

@lotusfilmgirl @InkAmazon #GeekGirlCon.Witnessed birth of a revolution that'll change media, our daughters & what they'll dare to dream and imagine 4evr.TU!

@ComandanteA @GeekGirlCon I loved, loved, loved #GeekGirlCon as the wonderful Trina Robbins said "The time has come" ;) Congrats to all!

@Karowak @GeekGirlCon, Enjoyed Trina Robbins! Didn't realize there were women out there rocking the comic scene since before I was born :)

@sarahkuhn Old friends, new friends, BSG ships, bad(ass) karaoke, #CheeseCon, moved to tears too many times to count.@GeekGirlCon, you have my heart.

@shibuyababy Stuff we did this weekend: Sold out @GeekGirlCon, didn't sleep, met rad people, bought goodies, smiled, made sock puppets, had interview!

@emcgillivray Held back those happy tears all weekend at #GeekGirlCon. Then sat on my couch, read what @ruckawriter wrote in my Batwoman trade & cried

@KelseyMWallace Home from #GeekGirlCon! So fun to hang w/ @femfreq @InkAmazon & meet other fun geeks--was able to hide my lack of Dr. Who knowledge too!

@sarahkuhn @InkAmazon @emcgillivray You ladies + your team did an amazing job! Smart, focused programming + a real sense of community. #GeekGirlCon

@ComandanteA I'm still excited about getting to know inspiring people like @GailSimone, Trina Robbins, @InkAmazon, Jan Van Meter, @FemFreq... Amazing :)

@InkAmazon @shibuyababy @KiriCallaghan @GeekGirlCon Woke up at 5am, remembered how happy we made so many people, & gave in to the tears. I'm so proud.

@KiriCallaghan At most conventions I always find friends but at #GeekGirlCon, I feel like I found family. @GeekGirlCon

@dcwomenkicknass @GailSimone I know how much hard work and enthusiasm went into this and I'm thrilled, but not surprised, it is a hit. Wish I was there.

@RaeBeta While I realize it's less than halfway through, I feel comfortable calling @GeekGirlCon a resounding success. #awesome #andhow

@ChaseMasterson Nerd. Heaven. Trust me, you wish you were here. @GeekGirlCon

@ChaseMasterson I'm telling you, @thedoubleclicks were worth the trip from LA alone.@GeekGirlCon

@shibuyababy Turned the page of the @strangersuggest to see mine &@InkAmazon 's smiling faces in a @GeekGirlCon feature!twitpic.com/6wt4os

@mirthalia So, now that I'm back I feel free to say that I spent the weekend at #GeekGirlCon and it was amazing. The atmosphere, the panels, everything

@WirednWicked After reading the blog post from @GailSimone, I want to save up and take my little sisters & nieces to Geek Girl Con next time it comes.

@Julesong @rachelleabellar @shibuyababy Besides which, it was a BLAST to craft something beginning of day & use it to finish the con :)

@karenkathryne Awesome #geekgirlcon moment: the rest of the panel's faces as Trina Robbins declared "I HATE J Michael Strazynski" (for his run on WW). :P

@TheStephThorpe ....and cue #geekgirlcon withdrawals. it was a fantastic 1st year. brava @GeekGirlCon! thank you for bringing us all together.

@bergopolis Safe to say that #GeekGirlCon was a game-changer, and I'm incredibly proud to be involved.

@melme Still reeling from #GeekGirlCon. I cannot describe how amazing it was to hear from so many inspirational women. Can't wait for next year!!

@justjenndesigns Spending time w/ @GailSimone & thrilled she promoted my blog (!) is what #GeekGirlCon is all about. Camaraderie, creativity & support. <3

@LvCherieJewelry #GeekGirlCon was so fun and inspiring that I only slept 3 hours last night. So many ideas and so worth it!

@DayAlMohamed Still in Seattle after #geekgirlcon and headed back to DC on Tue. Exhausting but great. Proud to have been a supporter/donor/sponsor.

@shibuyababy Me too! <3 RT @greenspyders: Tearing up reading #GeekGirlContweets. So glad people had fun, it makes all of the work & stress worth it.

@hopelessjen #GeekGirlCon was splendid. Met people I've admired for years, admire many I just met, caught up w/ friends, learned a ton. Great show.

@shibuyababy @KiriCallaghan @GeekGirlCon Aaaand then there go the waterworks. At least now I don't have to worry about screwing up my makeup. ;)

@kyrax2 Thank you to everyone at @GeekGirlCon for making #GeekGirlConan amazing, smashing success. What a positive experience! Thank you so much!

@hopelessjen @GailSimone It really does feel that way, doesn't it? I came away so inspired, energized and stirred.

@AliciaMcBarron Overheard at #GeekGirlCon "This is the best smelling con I've been to."

@sarahkuhn @InkAmazon @emcgillivray You ladies + your team did an amazing job! Smart, focused programming + a real sense of community. #GeekGirlCon

@lotusfilmgirl @InkAmazon And what size tiara do you require??? #GeekGirlCon

@lotusfilmgirl @TiredFairy You led the way on the perfect ending to a revolutionary weekend! Thank you for your kind and encouraging words!!! #GeekGirlCon

@femfreq Watching Labyrinth with a room full of geek girls is the only way to watch it! #GeekGirlCon

@rachelleabellar Highlight of my day was Greg Rucka yelling "Awesome!" when we were taking a hench girl photo #GeekGirlCon #HENCH4LIFE

@Jennifer_deG I'm sitting next to a sleeping Black Canary. #GeekGirlCon

@KiriCallaghan I have nearly cried like 5 times today. The vibe going on is so amazing. Thank you everyone. Seriously. #GeekGirlCon@GeekGirlCon

@fivedaysaway Trina Robbins is awesome. #GeekGirlCon

@missmodular #geekgirlcon audience question: "i'm Isabella & i'm still in elementary school & I was wondering what I can do to get into real science?"

@Melhowrad Ps. To my fellow #GeekGirlCon staff members: you people are amazing! I'm so proud/happy to be apart of the first ever GGC team :)

@semanticpoetry I feel like I'm part of something important. #geekgirlcon

@RobbOrr @Spaceknight_69 @Nightfly_69 @backthatelfup Thank you for the retweets. MUCH appreciated! GeekGirlCon is an amazing organization.

@mariancall OMG @Janeespenson will be at @Geekgirlcon in Seattle? Oh awesome awesome awesome. geekgirlcon.com

@LauraBishop Looking over @GeekGirlCon's Saturday programming. Yeah. I'm pretty sure I'm just not going to have time to eat. Or breathe. =D

@lolacolleen Looked @geekgirlcon programming. However will I decide? Get ready for some awesome blogging about the panels!!

@rachelleabellar Looking at the @GeekGirlCon program booklet and I'm getting misty-eyed!

@lookitsjulia Got the October issue of Seattle Met today, and you'll never guess what I found in there. (Hint: it's @GeekGirlCon )

@Brinstar Apparently #GeekGirlCon had ~2000 attendees. Not bad for a first-year convention targeted to geeky women & girls. Well done, @GeekGirlCon

@semanticpoetry Looking at some of the photos from Seattle and @GeekGirlCon and feeling a little teary.

@GirlInRowB Musings on #geekgirlcon..I found the people who should have been my brothers & sisters by blood & wish I was Trina Robbins' granddaughter.

@greenspyders Is it bad that I'm still squeeing over #GeekGirlCon a week later? We did it!!! #GeekGirlConStaffFTW

@greenspyders @raidswindmills "The Con Was Organized by Meticulous OCD Ninjas" is definitely one of my favorite quotes about #GeekGirlCon now.

@merismullaley Things I want to do now that #geekgirlcon is over: rewatch Buffy, read Wonder Woman for the first time; and change the world.

The Feminism
@femfreq Michelle Hu reminds folks that when we bring up privilege we are not talking about individuals we’re talking about systems #geekgirlcon

@RhetoricalTrope If you avoid all the media that’s problematic, you have nothing to consume: critique b/c you care. #geekgirlcon

@femfreq Audience member talks about how exhausting it can be to explain oppressive issues online and repeatedly get attacked for it #geekgirlcon

@femfreq Panelists: It is not the job of a person of colour to teach white folks about privilege, it’s their job to learn #geekgirlcon

@femfreq On the sexualization of women: @GailSimone – characters created to break stereotypes in one decade become stereotypes in next #geekgirlcon

@BitchMedia Just saw some clips from the forthcoming doc The History of the Universe As Told By Wonder Woman! Be excited.#GeekGirlCon

@GeekGirlCon “Find a community you feel secure in and keep that community free of cattiness.” – @mariancall at Killing Cattiness panel #GeekGirlCon

@Jennifer_deG An interesting thing about #GeekGirlCon: Nobody assumes the men are just tagging along. Yay for men who are feminists!

@BitchMedia Talking about women in the horror genre at #GeekGirlCon! “How can horror create social change?”

@deirdrakiai Media literacy panel = awesome. Glad they acknowledged that the “if you don’t like it, make your own” argument is patronising. #geekgirlcon

@femfreq Panelists discuss how it’s useful to define words to make sure readers are on the same page especially with race or feminism#geekgirlcon

@femfreq Dierdre Kiai on masculinity in video games: Patriarchy Hurts Men Too #geekgirlcon

@reelgrrls “A lot of problems w/rep. of women in vid games could be solved by including more than 1 woman in each game” -Katherine Cross #geekgirlcon

@femfreq A takeaway from Media Literacy panel: Many of us struggle with the negotiation between enjoying media & criticizing it #geekgirlcon

@GeekGirlCon At the GirlHeroes Panel w/ Trina Robbins, @robertagregory, @inkamazon, @hopelessjen, & @annetimmons! Amazing, strong women. #GeekGirlCon

@femfreq Panelist: I want my girls to be empowered, not necessarily with powers #GeekGirlCon

@femfreq Hello Seattle: Just had a great ride in the @BBDreamHearse and a wonderful conversation about women in comics w/ Trina Robbins #GeekGirlCon

@Brinstar Holy crap. This media literacy panel is good. They actually mention intersectionality, kyriarchy, POC, anti-racism, & ableism. #GeekGirlCon