(First Look) Virtuous.Con Returns Online To Celebrate Black Creators

Virtuous Con, the highly-anticipated annual virtual creative convention, is set to return for its 4th Annual Black History Month Event from February 23 – 25, 2024. Accessible through the official Virtuous Con website, this year’s online event will center around the theme “The Future is Ours,” celebrating and showcasing the remarkable achievements of Black creators in the independent creative space. The online show also features a new free Opening Night event providing attendees with a taste of the larger convention. 



An impressive lineup of renowned authors is scheduled to appear, including actor/writer producer Malcolm Barrett, (The Boys, Average Joe), Tananarive Due (The Reformatory), N.K. Jemisin (The Broken Earth Trilogy), Vashti Harrison (BIG), Victor Lavalle (Lone Women) and Daniel José Older (Star Wars the High Republic). Joining them are esteemed screenwriters Brandon Easton (Iyanu), Latoya Morgan (The Walking Dead), as well as Cody Ziglar (Craig of the Creek, Spider-Punk) and Rodney Barnes (Winning Time, Killadelphia), both talented screenwriters and comic book creators.

Other award-winning comic creators featured at the event are Odunze Whyte Oguguo (“Clock Striker”), David Crownson (“Harriet Tubman Demon Slayer”), Alitha Martinez (“Nubia: Queen of the Amazons”), and Roye Okupe, (“The Oloris”) , whose series “Iyanu” has been adapted into an animated series by Lion Forge Entertainment for Max and Cartoon Network.

The cornerstone of the convention are the Virtuous Con Virtual Vendor Rooms. Participants will have access to four virtual “floors,” showcasing independent artists, authors, and illustrators dedicated to science fiction, fantasy, comic books, anime, and more. Hosted on Remo.co, the vendor floor this year features expanded programming within the showroom floor, including tutorials and discussions providing yet another option for attendees.

Virtuous Con is an online science-fiction and comic culture convention dedicated to celebrating independent Black artists and creators worldwide. Our unique platform provides both fans and creators with a live, authentic, and interactive experience, allowing attendees to engage with, support, and purchase directly from artists in real time. Unlike other virtual platforms, Virtuous Con is a truly immersive science fiction (sci-fi) and comic culture virtual convention (Con) that focuses on bringing together independent artists and passionate fans. The founder is  Cerece Rennie Murphy. a Washington D.C. native and Award-Winning science fiction author, is not only celebrated for her imaginative works like The Order of the Seers and The Wolf Queen series but has also emerged as a proactive advocate for independent creators in the realms of science fiction, fantasy, and comics.

In response to the challenges faced by her creative colleagues, particularly those from BIPOC backgrounds, during the COVID-19 shutdowns, Murphy founded Virtuous Con.Murphy’s dedication to supporting her peers in the face of adversity is evident in her commitment to building a more inclusive and resilient creative community, showcased through her roles as the founder of the Narazu website and Virtuous Con.

A few vendors include: Sarah Jefferson CarterDream Fury ComicsARWBooksJocelyn Short,KEEF CROSS (Smize and Dream/Tyra Banks)Kingwood Comics.

This year’s sponsors include Patron HuntLion Forge EntertainmentWacom, Adobe, IncBest Jacket Press and Otaku Noir.





Wonder-filled Worlds: Worldbuilding for Children-Saturday February 24th, 11am-12pm
Children of color deserve stories that spark their imagination and fuel their minds with infinite possibilities. Yet, all too often the stories with characters that look like them are centered around tragic narratives that don’t foster a joyful heart. Our panelists discuss the techniques and the mission behind their magical stories and what it takes to bring elevated narratives to young readers. Hosted by Cerece Rennie Murphy. Panelists:  Vashti HarrisonGreg BurnhamB. Sharise MooreEden Royce
Train ‘Em Right: The Importance of Fiction for Black Kids-Saturday February 24th, 12:30-1:30pm

We as the village raising Black kids in a world that is increasingly dangerous have to cover so many angles when preparing our kids for the “Real World.” There are many books on the shelves that teach kids about the lives of significant historical figures but how can we also provide our kids a childhood of fun, wonder, and possibility along with the warnings they need to stay safe? Fiction can help provide escapism, show kids they have a history and folklore to be proud of, and give them a sense of adventure no matter what their circumstances.

Kid-lit authors Maurice BroaddusKaren StrongDaVaun Sanders, and Eden Royce discuss why they wrote their books for young readers and how introducing your kids to fiction early can help give them a sense of strength and confidence that the world seems to always be seeking to tear away

Sculpting Fiction: Painting Fiction with Reality’s Brushstrokes with N.K. Jemisin-Saturday February 24th, 2pm-3pm
Join writer, podcaster, and Virtuous Con producer Karama Horne in a live discussion with triple Hugo Award-winning fantasy author N.K. Jemisin, known for her acclaimed “Broken Earth Trilogy” and “Great Cities” Duology. They will explore the art of worldbuilding and character development. Jemisin will share her expertise on seamlessly integrating real-world elements into fictional narratives, providing valuable tips and techniques for authentically weaving these elements into stories while striking a balance between imagination and reality. Don’t miss this insightful conversation about the creative process behind crafting compelling narratives.
Griots & Guilds: Original Narratives in TTRPG-Saturday February 24th, 5pm-6pm
Dive into the world of tabletop role-playing games (TTRPGs) from the perspective of Black players. Join us as we explore the unique art of original story creation and worldbuilding, drawing inspiration from African and African-American history. Our panelists will share their experiences, insights, and innovative approaches to infusing TTRPG narratives with rich cultural and historical elements. Don’t miss this opportunity to engage in an inspiring conversation that celebrates diversity and creativity in tabletop gaming. Panelists: Gabe HicksOmega JonesAliza Pearl, B. Dave WaltersMarkeia McCarty
YouTube vs Twitch: Which is better for Black gamers-Sunday February 25th, 11am-12pm
The panel discussion will feature prominent gamers discussing the pros and cons of streaming on YouTube and Twitch for the Black gaming community. The panel aims to explore the unique opportunities and challenges that Black gamers may encounter on each platform, including issues of representation, community support, and dealing with potential racism. The discussion will provide valuable insights for Black gamers looking to establish a presence in the online gaming and streaming space, and it will shed light on the different ways each platform can support and empower Black gaming content creators. Panelists: Karim CheeseBetty NixxAyChristineDeeJay Knight
Emote Class with Yung Khan-sponsored by Wacom-Sunday February 25th, 12:30pm-1:30pm
🎮 If you’ve explored Twitch, you’re aware of the immense popularity and profitability of creating emotes. Join artist Khan Kane in this Wacom-sponsored demonstration, as he shares his skills on emote creation, transforming your hobby into a lucrative business!  Artist: Khan Kane
Ancestral Dreams: Penning Fantasies from across the Diaspora-Sunday February 25th, 12:30pm-1:30pm
Embark on a magical journey with our panel of award-winning writers who have harnessed the diaspora as their muse. Join us for a captivating exploration of fantasy storytelling rooted in ancestral mythology and cultural heritage. Discover how these celebrated authors weave their diaspora-inspired narratives. Panelists: Tananarive DueJarvis Bernard SheffieldL. PenelopeRachel Howzell HallDaniel Jose Older
Pens of Protest: Speaking the Truth in the Age of Banned Books-Sunday February 25th, 2:00pm-3:00pm
This compelling panel discussion features award-winning authors who have experienced the banning of their books. Moderated by cultural critic, producer and host Janicia Francis, the panel includes Fred Joseph, (“Your Black Friend,”) Mikki Kendall, (“Hood Feminism,”) and Ibi Zoboi (“American Street.,”)in a frank discussion about censorship, activism and the importance of upholding freedom of expression. This thought-provoking conversation promises to shed light on the impact of book banning and the power of literature in addressing critical social issues. Don’t miss this opportunity to engage with these influential voices.


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Twitter: https://twitter.com/ConVirtuous

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