I’m not exaggerating when I say that Kate Leth is everything I want to be. I’m not the only one who sees her this way, tons of little girls (and boys too!) are calling her a hero after the release of her latest graphic novel, Adventure Time: Seeing Red.
I’ve been following Kate Leth since I first discovered her web comic, Kate or Die! Since then, I’ve watched her blossom into an ass-kicking, feminist comic book artist who's finally getting some well-deserved public attention. Leth has experienced firsthand the trials of being a girl who works in comic book world, but she refuses to accept the misogynistic behavior that the culture is known for. Leth started Beware the Valkyries (a massive group of women who work in comic stores) in order to foster a lady community within the geek culture many of us know, love, and are too often excluded from.
Leth also self publishes her own comics and continues to write her own autobiographical web comic, which explores her personal life and delves into her battles with sexism. Her most recent comic portrays her struggle to get therapeutic help, as the heroine begins to realize that the good things in life often come with the bad. Her very human comic has received critical acclaim, even from us!
Kate’s newest published graphic novel has been rushing off the shelves everywhere, and the reviews are in: it rules. The story follows Adventure Time character Marceline the Vampire Queen as she travels back to see her family in the Nightosphere, only to find that her most prized possession has gone missing. Illustrated by Zachary Sterling (who has greatly influenced my own drawings) and released in early March, the comic has been receiving tons of great feedback — the best of which has come from little girl fans:
Leth receives praise like this at every signing she attends, and features pictures with her younger fans on her tumblr blog. My favorite fan-story is about a girl who picked up Seeing Red and decided that, because of Kate, girls could make comics too! The young fan later sold her first graphic novel, and sent Leth the following thank-you:
I hope one day I can inspire little girls the same way Kate Leth does every day with her comics. The male dominated geek world could use a few more ladies, and Kate is pushing her way through.
Photos courtesy of Instagram and Tumblr