Wednesday, April 27, 2016

An Indian Comic Heroine and Her Part in Spreading Diversity in Publishing

NOTE: This guest post was written by my colleague J.M.DeSantis, who has written and illustrated his comic, Chadhiyana.


True diversity in publishing is a rare thing, but there is one publisher that has been living that since its inception in 2013. That publisher is Rosarium Publishing, and I am happy to say that I have been a part of their movement to create diversity in publishing when they signed my comic, Chadhiyana, to be a part of their growing catalogue of books and comics.
Chadhiyana is a dark fantasy series about a female assassin’s struggle to overcome a dark past she is trying to run from. It takes place in a world based on medieval India and the Middle East, making Chadhiyana (the title character), essentially, an Indian heroine--a very underrepresented culture in comics and literature.
In the present series, In the Company of Shadows, the reader finds Chadhiyana as the first female member of a clandestine organization known as the TalIfatiir. They travel to a foreign land to destroy a demon whose darkness, and partly to that end, they capture a witch who is said to serve said demon. Though as they journey to their destination, the witch and her presence slowly becomes a catalyst for Chadhiyana questioning the quest and her place in the group.



Recently, in an effort to further their commitment to publishing diverse books and authors, and to create more demand for those books, Rosarium Publishing began running a crowdfunding campaign. Amongst those being funded is the first Chadhiyana trade (graphic novel; collecting issues 1 – 6; half of the Company of Shadows story).
To date, Rosarium Publishing’s books have received positive reviews and attention for their innovation. Three of their authors and four of their books are up for Glyph Awards this year. But even with all of this, they are still looking for support to reach a new level in their growth.
You can find the campaign HERE and browse the perks for your contribution. (Of course, I’d love if you’d all pre-order the first Chadhiyana volume for your high school library.  It will be in the $20 range--and it comes with a free mini-comic; due out Jan 2017) If you can't contribute, please help to spread the word on social media by sharing this post and tagging #Chadhiyana and #rosariumpub. The campaign ends on May 4th.
Thank you for any way you choose to join this movement for diversity in publishing and building Chadhiyana further.

About the author:
J.M. DeSantis is a writer and artist of fantasy, horror and humour. He has authored a number of short stories and artworks for various publishers. Chadhiyana is his first graphic novel. He is also the writer and artist for the humorous horror webcomic, Gentleman Cthulhu: Emeritus Moribus Monstrum He lives in his native NJ where he teaches studio art and graphic design. You can read more about his work on jmdesantis.com.

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