Nerd For A Living returns to one of our favorite conventions — Seattle’s Emerald City Comic Con — to present some awesome speaker panels at the 2019 show.
ECCC 2019 is happening March 14th to the 17th, and Nerd For A Living’s Wendy Buske will be busy moderating and speaking on geeky business and career panels. This includes our fan favorite “How to be a Nerd for a Living” discussion, as well as some brand new offerings that we’re sure will fire up your nerd brain. All the info is below!
- How to be a Nerd for a Living: Discovering Careers in Pop-Culture — Thursday, March 14th
- The Cult of Side Hustle — Thursday, March 14th
- Nostalgia Marketing in Geek Biz — Sunday, March 17th
In addition to our panels, Wendy will be moderating Bombsheller’s “Behind the Merch Table: Turning Your Art into Products that Sell” panel – Saturday, March 16th, 12:15pm-1:15pm in Room TCC L3-R1. More info for that panel here.
If you’re more interested in the fiction and writing side of nerdom, we’ve got you covered, too. Adron Buske, host of our sister podcast Fictitious, will be hosting a couple of awesome discussions, too. Find out about his panels — “Story Unlimited: Using Non-Traditional Methods & Media to Tell YOUR Story” and “10 Points to Slytherin: Why Good Fans Love Evil Characters” — at the Fictitious Podcast website.
How to be a Nerd for a Living
Discovering Careers in Pop-Culture
Thursday, March 14th, 2019 | 12:30pm-1:30pm | Room TCC L3-R4
Do you want to build a career in the “nerdy” industry you love, but you’re not sure where to begin? This panel of professional “Nerds for a Living” will share advice and insights into a variety of careers that exist within comics, gaming, animation, literature, and more during this discussion. From entrepreneurial endeavors to working for some of the biggest brands in fandom, learn how our guests got their start – and get actionable advice on what it takes to create a path to the career you want. Join Nerd For A Living co-founder, Wendy Buske, as she leads this informative and instructional discussion.
- Katherine Arden — author of the Winternight Trilogy
- Liana Kangas — comic artist, Black AF: Devil’s Dye
- Afua Richardson — comic creator, Black Panther: World of Wakanda
- Sara Talmadge — illustrator & animator, Pipeworks’ Terraria
- Robyn Warren — founder of Geek Girl Strong
The Cult of Side Hustle
Thursday, March 14th, 2019 | 4:00pm-5:00pm | Room TCC L3-R1
The idea of having your own geek-biz “side hustle” can be exciting — making cash and maybe even pursuing a creative dream without quitting your day job. But it can also be daunting and overwhelming. How do you get going? What do you love doing enough to add hours of work to your every day? And, most importantly, is the reality of what it takes to be “successful” something you REALLY want to do? This panel of nerdy business side (and full-time) “hustlers” share what it took for them to get off the ground, the roadblocks they had to navigate, and if all of that hustle is paying off. Moderated by Nerd For A Living’s Wendy Buske.
- Jaimie Cordero — CEO & Glitter Jedi, Espionage Cosmetics
- Jordan Ellis — founder of Jordandené and The Sartorial Geek
- Jazzlyn Stone — COO of Bombsheller
- Tara Theoharis — writer, The Minecrafter’s Cookbook
- Jen Vaughn — comics writer & artist, Teenage Wasteland
Nostalgia Marketing in Geek Biz
Sunday, March 17th, 2019 | 3:45pm–4:45pm | Room WSCC 3B
The “good old days” can conjure powerful emotions — ones that make us long for all we loved way back when. More than ever, geeky brands are tapping into those warm, fuzzy feels – and creating products inspired by the stories, games, toys and more that bring us back in time. Where is this trend going, and what opportunities are there for makers and fans alike? This panel of creators, taste-makers and industry pros will talk about how nostalgia plays into what they make, the way they market their work, and the benefits it provides for connecting with an audience. Moderated by Tara Theoharis.
- Wendy Buske — co-founder, Nerd For A Living; Senior Digital Producer, Rodgers Townsend
- Mike Collins — digital clean-up artist for Netflix’s She-Ra
- Liana Kangas — comic artist, Black AF: Devil’s Dye
- Hillary Shadowlance — Creative Director / Cosplay Imperator, Espionage Cosmetics
- Jazzlyn Stone — COO, Bombsheller
Katherine Arden is the bestselling author of the Winternight Trilogy, which began with The Bear and the Nightingale and concluded in January with The Winter of the Witch. She also recently made her middle grade debut with the creepy ghost story, Small Spaces. Born in Austin, Texas, Katherine has lived in France, Russia, Hawaii, and now lives a writer’s life in Vermont.
Once described by actor Nathan Fillion as has having “actual talent,” Mike Collins has spent the last 12 years working in television animation for such Cartoon Network shows as The Mis-adventures of Flapjack, The Powerpuff Girls, Adventure Time, Sym-Bionic Titan, Ben 10: Omniverse and Emmy-winning shows Class of 3000 and Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends. He was part of the award-winning production crew at 6 Point Harness on Tom Hanks’ web-series “Electric City.” Currently at DreamWorks TV, he was involved in the award-winning Mr. Peabody and Sherman Show for Netflix and is now the digital clean-up artist for the reboot of She-Ra, helmed by Lumberjanes creator Noelle Stevenson.
Jaimie Cordero is the CEO / Artistic Director of Espionage Cosmetics, an all nerd, woman-owned business based in Tacoma, Washington, creating make-up for nerds, by nerds. Founded in 2011, the company has seen enormous growth in the niche nerd market. Espionage Cosmetics has expanded from a living-room operation to a Tacoma-based studio space with 8 full-time employees, several part-timers and an army of interns. Bi-monthly product launches and fully produced ad campaigns pour out of the studio manned by a full-time wardrobe master/cosplay expert, an interns and conventions coordinator, and Jaimie. Her business card says Glitter Jedi.
Jordan Ellis is the incredible force behind Jordandené, a geeky lifestyle brand based in Brooklyn. Jordandené sells all kind of subtly-nerdy products, from tees and tanks to mugs and phone cases. Their geek chic apparel and home goods are lettered by hand to create unique designs suited for everyday use. Jordandené also runs The Sartorial Geek, a quarterly magazine promoting nerd culture, girl power, and general good vibes.
Liana is a freelance comic artist and a self proclaimed edgelord dog mom, who works in both digital & traditional formats. With a lifelong love of comics and a professional background in marketing and outreach – she combined the two to pursue a full time freelance comics career; including being published in 2000 AD’s 2018 Sci-Fi Special, Comic Mix’s Ringo Award Winning anthology graphic novel Mine! to support Planned Parenthood, and Image Comic’s Where We Live. She is currently drawing Black Mask Studio’s Black AF series Devil’s Dye, created by Osajyefo & Smith 3 – written by Vita Ayala, edited by Sarah Litt, as well as her own co-creator owned series with writer Joe Corallo.
Afua Richardson is an American comic book creator best known for her work on the Eisner winning mini-series Black Panther World of Wakanda. Her works helped influence the designs for the Oscar-nominated film. Other works include Top Cow’s Genius, Wonder Woman Warbringer, Attack on Titan’s American anthology and cover work for Marvel’s Shuri, Captain America and the Mighty Avengers, Captain Marvel and many others. In addition to being an illustrator, Afua is a singer, songwriter and musician, activist, and mentor. She has been aptly called the Jane of all trades.
Hillary Shadowlance is the Creative Director / Cosplay Imperator of Espionage Cosmetics, an all nerd, woman-owned business based in Tacoma, Washington. Spotted as a Demon Hunter from Diablo III one fateful day, Hillary was brought into the Land of Fandom & Glitter and has since been slaying not only monsters, but Nerd Makeup and Nerd Manicures for this cruelty free brand. The Nerd Misfits of EC specialize in products that meld nerdom and beauty in subtle and inventive ways and continually charge forward on their crusade to stir the imagination and introduce cosmetics with a (sometimes hidden) twist.
Jazzlyn Stone is the COO of Bombsheller, which creates Badass Leggings, printed on demand, featuring many favorite nerdy fandoms and themes. She is also the CoEditor of Make Space Zine, and a photographer living and working Seattle, WA. Photo by Stephen Klise (@StephenKlise).
Sara Talmadge is an illustrator and animator with 8 years of game industry experience in teams both large and small. She has worked on internationally recognized IP such as Marvel’s Avengers (Marvel Avengers Alliance Tactics) as well as indie titles such as Nimblebit’s Tiny Tower 2 and Lab Zero’s Skullgirls. She is currently the lead artist at Pipeworks on Terraria. When she is not working on games or her own illustrative projects, Sara is often working on published comics – most notably Boom’s Steven Universe and Garfield titles. Originally from Yokohama, Japan, she settled in Oregon where she spends her days complaining about the weather.
Tara Theoharis is the creator of The Geeky Hostess – a nerdy baking and party brand – as well as the author of The Minecrafter’s Cookbook from Sky Pony Press. In addition to her formidable baking and writing talents, she has also hosted live streams, live events, fashion shows, and has spoken on many panels and podcasts. Tara is also a marketing and crowdfunding consultant for top game and geek companies, with 10+ years of marketing under her belt.
Jen Vaughn is a comics artist and writer, narrative designer, podcaster, and all around badass storyteller. Jen is the artist of Teenage Wasteland, and has worked on comics series including Adventure Time, Archie, and Goosebumps. Vaughn also appears on the d20 Dames podcast, and recently released her first Dungeons & Dragons adventure, The Experiments of Dr. Skulldial.
Robyn Warren, M.S. Ed. is the founder of Geek Girl Strong, a wellness community for those who want a non-traditional and wholistic coaching experience. Robyn’s clients and group classes include people who are beginning their wellness journey or are just in need of a supportive boost, and have a common interest in all things geeky!
Wendy Buske is the producer and PR director at Nerd For A Living, which she co-founded in 2013 as a way to help people discover new career possibilities in pop-culture. Wendy has been organizing events and speaking at conventions around the country for over 7 years, and was recently selected to be a storytelling “fellow” for the sixth season of Campfire. Wendy is also Senior Digital Producer & Content Marketing Lead at award-winning advertising agency, Rodgers Townsend/DDB – and has nearly a decade of agency experience in digital media, advertising & marketing for brands of all sizes.