I looked out into the audience, saw dozens of faces I knew well - LGBTQ folks, mostly - all avid comics readers and superhero fans and DC supporters, and it just hit me: Why was this so impossible? Why in the world can we not do a better job of representation of not just humanity, but also our own loyal audience?
I try to make every issue new-reader friendly. I remember being frustrated many times trying to pick up new series that were overladen with baggage. The trick is to make that backstory seem like something compelling that they will want to explore rather than an obstacle course they have to crawl through to get to the story.
I always look for a story that hasn't been told in the same way. I don't care about a lot of the usual elements people use for a quick drama boost. I want to know, for example, what happens when a man who was victimized by his father tries to be a father to a woman sixty years his senior.
I do a lot of book signings and conventions every year, and I meet a great many readers who are struggling... they're working through illness, injury, addiction, depression, grief, or some other trauma. It seems to me that there's a lot of heroism in fighting those things as well, as best you can.
Actually, the notion of what is acceptable for a moral government to do seems to have eroded in some ways since 9-11. Not to get too political here, but countries, including our own, seem to have accepted what was once almost unimaginable - condoning torture, for example, and even criminalizing peaceful protest.
Greg Rucka always writes lovely, believable female characters in books like 'Whiteout,' 'Queen and Country,' and 'Lazarus.' I am a fan of Kelly Sue DeConnick, who does a wonderful female lead in 'Captain Marvel.' And DC's 'Batwoman' is currently the only book at the Big Two with a lesbian solo lead character, and it's always outstanding.