Roberta Gregory
Born (1953-05-07) May 7, 1953 (age 68)
Los Angeles, California, United States
NationalityAmerican
Area(s)Cartoonist
Notable works
Naughty Bits
AwardsInkpot Award (1994)[1]
http://www.robertagregory.com

Roberta Gregory (born May 7, 1953)[2][3] is an American comic book writer and artist best known for the character Bitchy Bitch from her Fantagraphics Books series Naughty Bits.[4][5] She is a prolific contributor to many feminist and underground anthologies, such as Wimmen's Comix and Gay Comix.[6]

Career

While attending college, Gregory was exposed to the underground comix movement, one of the first times she had seen widespread works by female comic artists. At school, she contributed full-page strips called "Frieda the Feminist" and other artwork to Phil Yeh's campus humor paper, Uncle Jam, as well as art for the Women's Resource Center newsletter.

Gregory began her career in earnest in 1974 by sending a strip titled "A Modern Romance" to the all-female Wimmen's Comix anthology. She also created the strip Feminist Funnies in 1974, expanding it in 1976 for her own original comic book Dynamite Damsels, after it was rejected by Wimmen's Comix due to an alleged similarity to her other work.[7][8] Dynamite Damsels was the first continuing series self published comic by a woman.[9] Gregory has commented on this, stating that she was unaware of the groundbreaking nature of her work at the time of publishing.[6]

She continued to contribute to many other underground comix in the 1970s, including Gay Comix (later renamed Gay Comics) and Robert Kirby's Strange Looking Exile. She is the most prolific contributor to Gay Comix, having appeared in nearly every one of its 25 issues.[10]

In 1990 Gregory created "Bitchy Bitch" Midge McCracken, a woman angry at the world who frequently explodes with rage.[11] She starred in the 40-issue series Naughty Bits, which was published by Fantagraphics from 1991 to 2004. Bitchy Bitch has a lesbian counterpart character named Bitchy Butch. Beginning in 2001, a series of shorts featuring Bitchy Bitch called Bitchy Bits was shown on the Oxygen Network animated series X-Chromosome.[12] Life's a Bitch, an animated series spun-off from the X-Chromosome shorts, aired from 2003–2004 on Oxygen in the U.S. and on The Comedy Network in Canada.[6]

Gregory's other work includes the fantasy graphic novel Winging It (a spinoff of a comic she wrote for Gay Comix),[8] the 3-issue series Artistic Licentiousness, and the comic strip Sheila and the Unicorn.

Much of Gregory's recent work has focused on illustrated stories of her own and others' cats. Real Cat Toons was initially published as a fundraiser for her cat's medical bills, but was republished with additional material under the title True Cat Toons.[13]

She is one of the contributors to Free to Fight, the interactive self-defense project for women.[14]

She is currently working to complete Mother Mountain, the first chapter of which is available to read free on her website. Originally conceived as a spin-off from Winging It, Gregory has been working sporadically on it since the 1990s. Though it began as a graphic novel, she eventually chose to begin again, limiting it to text only. Gregory has stated that the story will span four novels, two of which are complete. She has also planned to complete a graphic novel prequel. Describing its content, Gregory states that the work is a fantasy romance which deals with the consequences of choices made in youth.[7]

Awards and Recognition

Personal life

Gregory was born in Los Angeles, California, to Disney comics writer and artist Bob Gregory.[9][6]

In 1971, she began college at California State University, Long Beach, where she was exposed to the feminist movement and comic influences such as Nanny Goat Productions members Joyce Farmer and Lyn Chevli. She contributed to her college humor paper until 1974, when she began her own Feminist Funnies.[6]

She moved to Seattle, Washington in 1989, where she resides to this day with her long-term partner, author Bruce B. Taylor. Though she chooses not to use labels with regards to her sexuality, Gregory is a long time participant in bisexual newsletter North Bi Northwest and other LGBTQ organizations.[19]

In addition to her comics, Gregory has been employed in many different day jobs, such as a marine biologist, production artist, market researcher, and most recently, a maintenance worker at McCaw Hall.[6]

Bibliography

Comics and graphic novels

Collections

Contributions

Gregory's work has appeared in the following anthologies:

In other media

Further reading

References

  1. ^ Inkpot Award
  2. ^ Kawasaki, Anton. "Happy Birthday, Roberta Gregory". Gay League. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  3. ^ Roberta Gregory at the Lambiek Comiclopedia.
  4. ^ "Artist Bio - Roberta Gregory". Fantagraphics Books. Archived from the original on December 17, 2014. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  5. ^ Constant, Paul (May 15, 2010). "Reading Today: Women We Love". The Stranger. Archived from the original on December 16, 2014. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Roberta's History". www.robertagregory.com. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  7. ^ a b Dueben, Alex (May 11, 2016). "Interview: Roberta Gregory on Mother Mountain, Wimmen's Comix, & Bitchy Bitch". The Beat. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  8. ^ a b "She Changed Comics: Roberta Gregory Interview". Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  9. ^ a b Hall, Simon, ed. (2013). No Straight Lines: Four Decades of Queer Comics. Fantagraphics Books. p. iii.
  10. ^ Mangels, Andy. “A History of Contributors” Gay Comics #25. Jul 1998. Print.
  11. ^ Bitchy Bitch at Don Markstein's Toonopedia. Archived from the original on March 6, 2015.
  12. ^ Beck, Jerry. "TV Review: X-Chromosome," ANIMATIONWorld (October 8, 2001).
  13. ^ "Home". truecattoons.com. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  14. ^ a b "Free to Fight!". 2007-10-12. Archived from the original on 2007-10-12. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  15. ^ Hahn, Joel, ed. "Inkpot Awards". Comic Book Awards Almanac. Archived from the original on November 30, 2009.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  16. ^ "Events – Cartoonists Northwest". Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  17. ^ "2003 Haxtur Awards". www.hahnlibrary.net. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  18. ^ "Friends of Lulu 2006 Lulu Awards". www.hahnlibrary.net. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  19. ^ "North Bi Northwest November-January 2005-2006 Vol. 18 Issue. 4". 2005–2006. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  20. ^ "Gauntlet". www.andymangels.com. Retrieved 2019-11-26.
  21. ^ "Roberta Gregory". Grand Comics Database. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  22. ^ "TV Review: X-Chromosome". Animation World Network. Retrieved 2019-11-26.