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DC Responds to Concerns over Lack of Female Comic Creators

Is the reported 12% to 1% drop in female creators incorrect?

You may have heard about the fan uprising first triggered after a San Diego Comic-Con 'DC New 52' panel in which a brave young lady asked the panelists (which comprised of only male creators) the question, 'where are all the women'? after noticing how few of DC's female characters will be receiving ongoing solo books this fall. You can read a great interview where she delves into her observations at the DC Women Kicking Ass blog. The conversation shifted from not only the drop in female solo books, the the drop in the number of female comic creators who would be working at DC come relaunch.

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One of the most contentious topics (and something claimed by a male reader during the panel) is that DC Comics would go from having 12% of their creators being female to a mere 1% starting this fall. You can read more about exactly how this conversation started at The Beat. If these numbers are accurate, this drop in the number of women who would be working at DC is definitely staggering. It also means that the number of women working at DC would be a poor representation of the number of DC readers who are also women. The big question is, how accurate is this number and where did it come from?

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According to a recent article at Bleeding Cool, the "52 titles feature 160 credited creators, 157 male and 3 female." These numbers are in fact exceptionally low, but it should be noted that they also fail to encompass all of the women who would be working at DC comics come September. The numbers tallied in the article only take into account the female cover artists, artists and writers working on the 52 new upcoming books based on the solicits released for September, which can be found here. These numbers don't take into account the number of women editors, assistant editors, colorists, inkers and more that work on a comic book to get it published.

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Even if these numbers are not accurate, the uproar that followed took the internet comic bloggers by storm. The fan reaction so heavily impacted DC's higher ups that on Friday they published a press release on DC Source blog. stating that DC takes their fans' "concerns very seriously."

We’ve been very fortunate in recent years to have fan favorite creators like Gail Simone, Amy Reeder, Felicia Henderson, Fiona Staples, Amanda Connor, G. Willow Wilson and Nicola Scott write and draw the adventures of the World’s Greatest Super Heroes.

DC Comics is the home of a pantheon of remarkable, iconic women characters like Wonder Woman, Lois Lane, Batgirl, Batwoman, Catwoman and Supergirl as well as fan favorite characters like Black Canary, Katana, Mera and Starfire. We’re committed to telling diverse stories with a diverse point of view. We want these adventures to resonate in the real world, reflecting the experiences of our diverse readership. Can we improve on that? We always can—and aim to.

We’ll have exciting news about new projects with women creators in the coming months and will be making those announcements closer to publication. Many of the above creators will be working on new projects, as we continue to tell the ongoing adventures of our characters. We know there are dozens of other women creators and we welcome the opportunity to work with them.

Our recent announcements have generated much attention and discussion and we welcome that dialogue.

Regardless of whether DC had been actively seeking out women to work for their company or not (which they claimed to have been doing), the fact that the publisher recognized and responded to the demands of both male and female fans alike regarding the demand for more women working on their comics is not something that should go unrecognized. Was this response generated by a young woman who was brave enough to ask the tough questions at Comic-Con? Or had DC been actively pursuing female creators (like they claimed) and simply could not find any? I'll go with the former. What do you think?