Earlier today, before the world exploded into a frenzy of DC superhero movies and left us all unable to move for fear of tripping over a B-Reel of Aquaman footage, a quieter but even better bit of news came to light: The Valkyries have now expanded to 300 members.
Who are the Valkyries? They’re a group of female retailers who have spent the last few years building up and building up, forming small communities which interlock into a grand, America-sweeping chain of women in comic shops. Started by Strange Adventures’ Kate Leth a few years back, the group was resigned to let female retailers know each other, and build a sense of community within a retailing environment which can be rather cruel to women. They’ve been supported by the industry, too, with people like Kelly Sue DeConnick in particular offering regular support and appreciation for their work. You can see her in the image above, along with Leth and several others.
Having crossed America and back, the group now includes members from all around the World. It is, I think, something worth noting. I’ve taken some female friends to one of my local comic shops, and they’ve always been surprised to see female workers, female customers – the image is of a culture where women are barred, for whatever stupid reason men have conceived. That couldn’t be less true, and it’s ace to see such a strong, developed community for female retailers to talk shop.
There’s no shortage of negativity and sexism in geek culture, but this group gives me strength. They empower each other. It’s a sisterhood, it really is. In our little way, even if just for each other, I think we’re making some change. At the very least, I know I’ve been changed for the better.
If you want to find out more – or join, yourself – here’s where to go.