SPACE-TIME QUEERTINUUM

Geist - - Endnotes - —Roni Simunovic

Ever since I started read­ing Star Trek fan fic­tion at age thir­teen, I knew we needed more queer rep­re­sen­ta­tion in the sci-fi genre; en­ter Be­yond: The Queer Sci-fi and Fan­tasy Comics An­thol­ogy (Be­yond Press, 2015), a col­lec­tion of short comics pro­duced by twenty six writ­ers and artists of di­verse sex­u­al­i­ties and gen­ders. Be­yond started when the writer Sfé R. Mon­ster tweeted a few years ago about their de­sire for an an­thol­ogy of sci-fi/fan­tasy/ad­ven­ture

comics with a queer fo­cus. The idea re­ceived much at­ten­tion, and the project took off, funded by a Kick­starter cam­paign in one day, with Sfé R. Mon­ster as editor. In the fore­word to Be­yond, Sfé R. Mon­ster writes about the long his­tory of tongue-in-cheek queer­ness in sci-fi and fan­tasy, and how this sub­text al­ways stops short of real mi­nor­ity rep­re­sen­ta­tion. Each comic fea­tures queer or trans char­ac­ters, who un­ravel space­time, search for rare din­ner in­gre­di­ents, fool pi­rates, at­tempt in­ter­stel­lar travel, slay mon­sters (or choose not to) and some­times grap­ple with fam­ily, re­la­tion­ships, gen­der and sex­u­al­ity. One story that stood out is “Op­ti­mal” by Blue Delli­quanti in which a syn­thetic an­droid who was meant to be a copy of their creator’s part­ner re­quests gen­der re­as­sign­ment. Since Be­yond was pub­lished, Sfé R. Mon­ster has cre­ated Be­yond Press to pub­lish more sci-fi and fan­tasy comics by queer-iden­ti­fy­ing and mi­nor­ity creators. Visit them at be­yond-press.com.

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