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GRRLTalk: Sam Maggs
Women's History Month is a sacred time here at SYFY FANGRRLS. This year, we've got a brand-new series to bring to the table: GRRLTalk. We sit down with some favorite ladies to learn all about their relationship with fandom.
Today, let's get to know Sam Maggs!
Name: Sam Maggs, author and game writer
What are you currently FANGRRLing over? Why do you love it?
I'm obsessing over Outlander at the moment. I've just binged all four seasons in, like, three weeks. I can't believe I missed the boat on this so badly, but the combination of time travel and lady doctor and kilts? Sign me up for more. I'm going to pick up the books next!
What was your first fandom?
I was majorly obsessed with two TV shows when I was 12: Stargate SG-1 and The West Wing. Yes, I was a strange child. Stargate really was my first sci-fi love, though, and I'm still obsessed with it. I think it's because Sam Carter was the first time I'd seen a woman character on TV who was more than one thing. Sure, she was a soldier, but she was also an astrophysicist, and she went on dates, and she was funny. She was as multifaceted as a real person, and I wanted more of that in my sci-fi.
When you were a kid, what was your most prized geek possession? Do you still have it?
It was probably my Game Boy Micro, because it was so portable and because no one else I knew had one. I definitely still have it. It's got my ancient copy of Pokémon Emerald inside.
Who was most instrumental in getting you into geek culture?
My parents were both big nerds, and I guess instead of rebelling and getting into sports, or something, I just kind of went along with it! My dad's read Marvel comics since the Golden Age, and he and my mom saw A New Hope in theaters over 20 times in the '70s. They used to keep me home from school to see opening-day matinees of movies like Serenity and The Phantom Menace. They're the best. My mom is still my favorite convention buddy.
What are you geek-curious about?
I am the least nerd-knowledgeable about anime, but I do want to learn more. I've enjoyed the ones that I've watched — especially Cowboy Bebop, Sailor Moon, and Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood — but it's such a big thing to get into and I just haven't been able to dedicate the time. Still, any recommendations are always welcome!
Do you collect nerdy stuff? If so, what?
Niche nerd alert, but I did my master's degree in Victorian literature (specifically a genre called Sensation Fiction and how it relates to depictions of mental health). So now I like to collect 19th-century books from that genre, or regarding medicine. I have a nice little display of ancient books now, and I love going to antiquarian bookstores and book fairs.
Do you cosplay? If yes, what’s your favorite cosplay that you’ve ever done?
I used to! My favorite cosplay was probably Rule 63 Booker, from BioShock Infinite.
What’s something geeky that you will always spend money on?
New video games, the day they come out. I'm a sucker for the hype machine.
If you could do a TED Talk on anything fandom-related, what would it be and why?
How the word "fangirl" has gone from being derogatory to empowering for women in nerd culture.
What’s one moment in nerd history you’ll never get over (good or bad)?
Everything about Harry Potter Book 7. I don't think I'll ever see a cultural moment like that again in my lifetime. I remember traveling to the U.S. to go to a Barnes & Noble for the midnight release party with friends, and then doing nothing but reading for days, not even sleeping until it was finished. Such a cool thing.
If a studio came to you and said they would adapt anything you wanted, what would it be and why?
A production company just announced they'll be developing Tamora Pierce's books into a TV show and that's been my dream since I was in the sixth grade.