GEEKS OUT BOARD INTERVIEW #3 – NICOLE GITAU

We here at Geeks OUT want you, the reader, to know more about who we are. To help with that, we’ve started interviewing members of our board so you know what makes us tick. Here’s our third interview!


Who are you and what do you do for Geeks OUT?

I’m Nicole Gitau, President of Geeks OUT and Special Guests Lead for Flame Con. My main role at Geeks OUT is taking care of high-level admin projects, cheerleading future initiatives, and making sure our committees are communicating as we all work to make queer magic together.


How did you first get involved?

I stumbled on the Geeks OUT booth at New York Comic Con in 2012. I was drawn in by (Co-founder and former President) Joey Stern’s enthusiasm… for everything… and agreed to write for the blog on the spot. After a year of volunteering to work other conventions and moderate panels, I joined the Board in 2014. It’s been a wild ride ever since.


What makes you geek out?

Like many good geeks (and all librarians), I’m excited by knowledge – acquiring it, sharing it. When I was 10, I carried around a notebook where I’d write down obscure facts I learned. These days, I’m more likely to put that same energy into community organizing. If there’s something you’ve got a question about, or someone you need to know, I’m happy to do the research for you.


What fictional character(s) had the most inspirational story arc to you and why?

Wesley Wyndam-Pryce (BtVS/Angel): I could deeply identify with a rule-abiding librarian who goes rogue defending their friends in the end-times.  Serafina Pekkala (His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman): A witch queen who exemplified the “if you love something, let it go” maxim. Many times over.Kelly (San Junipero, Black Mirror): She made a scary decision to do something for herself, after a lifetime of hiding and making others happy. [See also; Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Ruth in Fast Color for more inspiring big gestures of love.] Anyway… have I mentioned I love stories with sad Brits? 


Who do you ship?

Literally, every queer/trans/femme relationship in pop culture right now (visibility, y’all!). Rue & Jules (Euphoria): I mean, teeechnically they are canon (did you see those perfect snuggles?). But the will they/won’t they vibes are killing me and I just want a happy ending for these baby queers who are full of feels. Reminds me of my first relationship. Eve & Villanelle on Killing Eve: I’m a sucker for a good-girl-gives-in story. And, it’s like a really perfect round of F***, Marry, Kill when all options apply. Reminds me of my last relationship.Janelle & her next award show date: It’s been a good year for QWoC on the red carpet. 94% of that is because of Janelle’s swag. 


What’s Something underrated you think could use a shout out?

MariNaomi’s work in general, but her databases in particular: Queer Cartoonists and Cartoonists of Color, If you’re a fan, learn more! If you’re an organizer, you no longer have excuses about lacking diverse voices!

Geeks OUT Board Interview #2 – Kevin Gilligan

We here at Geeks OUT want you, the reader, to know more about who we are. To help with that, we’ve started interviewing members of our board so you know what makes us tick. Here’s our second interview!

Who are you and what do you do for Geeks OUT?
My name is Kevin Gilligan, I’ve been a board member of Geeks OUT since 2011. I oversee our presence at conventions across the country as the Head of Conventions, and I’m in charge of Experiences (Performance Stage, Cosplay Corner, and Gaymer Lounge) at Flame Con. I also co-host the weekly Geeks OUT Podcast. 

How did you first get involved?
I saw a call for volunteers for the Geeks OUT booth at NYCC, and then I kept asking what more I could do to get involved. 

What makes you geek out?
I’m huge into comics, comic book movies, sci-fi, and horror. I’ve loved horror movies ever since I saw my first double feature of Nightmare on Elm Street & Children of the Corn, when I was 5 years old. I got into comics, thanks to a friend I had growing up. And I got into sci-fi thanks to the adventures of Captain Jean-Luc Picard and his brave crew. 

What book/tv show/comic/etc are you enjoying now?
I just finished watching the final season of Jessica Jones, the new season of Veronica Mars, and just started the new season of She-Ra and the Princesses of Power. And I’m almost done re-watching the series Hannibal. 

What’s something underrated you think could use a shout out?
Being a slave to trends, a lot of indy books fall under my radar at times, but there are some that I’ve found that aren’t necessarily underrated, but I think more people should discover are: Dodge City by Josh Trujillo and art by Cara McGee & Misfit City by Kirsten (Kiwi) Smith & Kurt Lustgarten and art by Naomi Franquiz (both from BoomBox). And The Closet of Secrets from Geeks OUT’s John Jennison (available here).

What fictional setting would you most want to live in?
I would like to live on a Starfleet ship, either Enterprise or Discovery

We hope you dug this interview and hope to see a bunch of you at NYCC October 3rd-6th!

Geeks OUT Board Interview #1 – Steve Gianaca

We here at Geeks OUT want you, the reader, to know more about who we are. To help with that, we’ve started interviewing members of our board so you know what makes us tick. Here’s our first interview!


Who are you and what do you do for Geeks OUT?
I’m Steve Gianaca. I’m the Vice President of Geeks OUT and current chair of Flame Con.
How did you first get involved?
I found Geeks OUT while visiting PAX East in Boston almost 6 years ago. I found out they were local to NYC and emailed to get involved. I had a “small world” moment when my coworker emailed me at home shortly afterward. I thought there was a work emergency, but it turned out my coworker of two years in NYC was actually the founder of the non-profit I found in Boston, Geeks OUT. I’ve been involved ever since.
What makes you geek out?
So much! I love comics, fantasy and sci-fi of course, but my biggest nerd-hobby is gaming. Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Kingdom Hearts, Pokemon, Pikmin, Mortal Kombat, Katamari… the list goes on and on and on.
What fictional character had the most inspirational story arc to you and why?
Tohru Honda from Fruits Baskets comes to mind. In a world where others may intimidate you, the strength to compete can be found in kindness, compassion and growth.
What book/tv show/comic/etc are you enjoying now?
I’m currently diving down the rabbit hole and playing the original Dragon Quest games before 11 comes out on Switch.
What are your favorite geeky past times?
My yearly sojourn to PAX East is one of my favorite palette-cleansers from the stresses of life.
What’s Something underrated you think could use a shout out?
Local gamer meetups! I personally love the low-key atmosphere at Rockbar in NYC every Saturday from 3-9.
Who do you ship?
Axel and Roxas from Kingdom Hearts. Or Luxord and anyone Luxord is currently talking to, from Kingdom Hearts. He’s too swarthy for his own good.
What fictional setting would you most want to live in?
Send me to the Pokemon world please!
Who would your bff be?
In the pokemon world? I’d love a clique with Cynthia and Wallace.
What was your introduction to geekdom?
When I was in preschool, my older brother would sometimes setup my dad’s ancient and barely-working Intellivision. It was my first exposure to video games, quickly followed by the NES and Gameboy.


We hope you dug this interview and hope to see a bunch of you at Flame Con this weekend!