Unlocking the “Super” Power in Her Pen: DC and WriteGirl Empower the Next Generation of Female Storytellers
(Aug 12, 2019 – Burbank, CA) – On Friday, August 2, DC welcomed 40 teen storytellers from the award-winning creative writing mentorship organization, WriteGirl, into the publisher’s legendary halls to learn about the World’s Greatest Super Heroes and the art of graphic storytelling. This full-day writing workshop was developed to inspire these Los Angeles-area girls, ages 13-18, to unleash their unique superpowers through pen and paper and envision potential careers in comics and graphic novels.
The event kicked off with a welcome speech by Michele Wells, vice president and executive editor of DC’s Books for Young Readers program, followed by a series of breakout sessions taught by representatives from DC’s editorial team and several of the comics industry’s top writers and artists including Mariko Tamaki (“Harley Quinn: Breaking Glass”), Cecil Castellucci (“Female Furies”), Sarah Kuhn (“Shadow of the Batgirl”), Nicole Goux (“Shadow of the Batgirl”), Amy Wolfram (“DC Super Hero Girls”), Monica Kubina (“DC Super Hero Girls”), and Cat Staggs (“Adventures of Supergirl”).
Teen mentees gained firsthand experience of the collaborative nature of graphic storytelling, working together with the help of their professional mentors to develop original stories for Wonder Woman, Batgirl, Harley Quinn, Supergirl, and other iconic DC characters. From learning how to write captivating pitches, to discovering key elements of a superhero story, to writing their first comics script, the girls gained a new set of graphic storytelling tools to add to their writing toolbox.
“DC is a big fan of WriteGirl and the work they do in the community, and we are honored to have partnered with them for this event,” said Wells. “Beyond the technical skills taught in the workshop, we also wanted to show the girls there’s a place for them in this industry, whether that be as a writer, illustrator, colorist, or editor. We hope the girls hone their newfound skillsets and feel empowered to one day continue DC’s rich storytelling legacy and tell the next great Batman, Superman, or Wonder Woman story…or maybe create a brand-new character all their own!”
WriteGirl is a free program for aspiring female writers ages 13 to 18, many of whom are from at-risk and underserved communities. Girls participating in the program get guidance and mentorship from women who volunteer to share their expertise. The August 2nd event with DC was part of WriteGirl’s monthly mentoring workshop series.
"We're excited to give our girls the opportunity to delve into graphic storytelling. Giving them a chance to work with some of the best writers and artists in the industry doesn't just build skills for them, but also provides an empowering experience for them to see such stellar women creators in this genre,” said Keren Taylor, WriteGirl executive director. “Many of our girls face tremendous challenges in their lives and for them to be able to spend the day writing about women with superpowers really gives them a chance to dream outside of their world."
Below is a video segment produced by DC Daily recapping the day’s activities.
Home to iconic and globally recognized superheroes Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman, DC is one of the largest English-language publishers of comics in the world and a creative unit of WarnerMedia, publishing thousands of comic books, graphic novels, and magazines each year. Founded in 1934 with the launch of Detective Comics, DC is charged with strategically integrating its stories and characters across Warner Bros. and WarnerMedia properties.
WriteGirl is a Los Angeles-based creative writing and mentoring organization that pairs at-risk teen girls with professional women writers for one-on-one mentoring, genre-specific workshops, public readings, publications, and college and scholarship application assistance. Now in its 19th season, WriteGirl has maintained a 100 percent success rate in helping its seniors not only graduate from high school, but also enroll in college. WriteGirl has won more than 80 awards for its 18 years empowering teen girls. In 2013, WriteGirl was honored by First Lady Michelle Obama with the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, an initiative of the President’s Committee on the Arts & the Humanities and the highest national honor awarded to exemplary out-of-school time programs. For more information, visit www.writegirl.org.
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