Writer. Speaker. Cosplayer. Womanist.

Contact me: talynnkel@gmail.com

Some people talk about intersectional feminism. I live it every day in my fat, Black, femme, geek life.

For too long, I didn’t trust my experiences. I didn’t have words for the specific ways I’d been manipulated into mistrusting myself or confirmation from those who’d experienced the same thing. I felt alone while navigating a hostile society that told me I wasn’t adequate in any way at every level. My accomplishments were mandatory quotas and lowered standards and my failures were the logical outcome for someone of my race. No matter what I did or how well I did it, I was never going to be right.

So, I decided to just be me.

It wasn’t a decision I reached alone. Much of it was through resistance. Resistance to the ways people told me to act. To dress. To live. To be. Even as they supported some of what I did and celebrated the accomplishments they approved, there was still pressure for me to be who they wanted me to be. Pressure that ultimately pushed me away. Sometimes it bothers me that so much of who I am developed by resisting becoming who others wanted to be, but we often learn our limits in adversity and set our boundaries in defense. We don’t live in a world that gives you space to grow – we live in one that forces you to bend to popular will…and it’s a hard truth to accept and from which to move forward.

But we do. And it can be beautiful.

TaLynn Kel is a published essayist, educator, and cosplayer. She uses her enjoyment of cosplay to examine social and structural issues of American culture through the lens of pop-culture fandom. Having been an active participant in the cosplay community for thirteen years, TaLynn has a unique perspective, especially as a fat, Black, woman and has been featured on NBC for her approach to the art. She has also been interviewed by outlets such as The Mary Sue, Rolling Out Magazine, Brit & Co, and Ravishly.

TaLynn is an avid essayist. Many of her essays have been published by numerous websites, including Huffington Post, The Establishment, Fabulize Magazine, The Curvy Fashionista, Black Sci-Fi.com, AlterNet, Everyday Feminism, and Black Girl Nerds.

TaLynn is an active and adept public speaker. She creates new content that she presents at various cosplay and fan conventions throughout the year, talking about the intersections of race, gender, size, ableism, and sexuality. She has presented at conventions like DragonCon, MomoCon, and the Atlanta Science Fiction and Fantasy Expo as well as serving on panels at the previously mentioned convention plus Mid City Micro-Con, BlerDCon, and Blacktasticon (formerly known as SOBSFCon).

TaLynn curates new content constantly throughout the year for her interview show, Time Out with TaLynn Kel. She attends multiple conventions to interview Black creators. With 40+ interviews under her belt, TaLynn has created a catalogue of Black-created content with commentary on the work directly from the creators.

In addition to the above, TaLynn cohosts the New Wakanda podcast with Sorghum & Spear creator Dedren Sneed and Route 3 creator Robert Jeffrey II. The podcast talks about the lift of being a Black creator, real time with real information about the hustle.

TaLynn’s work to curate and interrogate Black-centered spaces is evident in all of her work. She is always on the search for additional opportunities to exchange information and promote Black creators. She is not afraid of challenging norms and doing the work to build a better society, one that tells the truth about its past, works to end oppression, and seeks to include all its members in its future. In her words:

“Normal is a lie. It always has been. It’s a curated reality that is often the depiction of aspirational whiteness…a reality that actively excludes races, bodies, sexualities, and ideologies that do not conform with the image whiteness seeks to have of itself.

To be a visible, fat, Black woman in this world, not only are you constantly enraged, but you are constantly erased from the story of your life. Your humanity is questioned. Your morality is suspect. Your survival is a testament to your strength, and your refusal to be silent and invisible is an act of defiance.

My life is a constant act of defiance as I dare to embrace my humanity and share it out loud and only mildly censored…sometimes.

Fuck normal. It’s a lie and I intend to keep breaking that shit with the baseball bat of my will. I suggest you get one, too.”


Broadcasting from the Intersection of Race, Gender, Size, and Empowerment

I have facilitated many safe-space conversations around the politics of race, gender, body image, activism, and cosplay in both online and in-person geek spaces.

I am available to speak at conventions, conferences, and academic spaces. I am also available to host events, moderate panels, and interview content creators.

I am also available to do sensitivity reading for manuscripts and other types or work.

Do not hesitate to contact me regarding rates and availability.

Portfolio of Speaking Engagements and Panels

I develop my content with the intention of audience participation. I firmly believe that learning is collaborative and these sessions are opportunities for both me and those in the room to learn how to improve our understanding of the world and society in which we live.

Cosplay Only

  • Cosplay for Beginners

  • Cosplay in Non-Canon Bodies

  • Cosplay as Resistance

  • Using Cosplay to Promote Your Brand

  • Body Positivity in Cosplay

  • Cosplay is All About Me

  • Cosplay: Expectation vs Reality

  • Cosplay AnyWay! Learn to Slay Your Body Positive Cosplay

Identity Politics in Fandom

  • Anti-Blackness in Fandom

  • Allyship in Fandom

  • Body Positivity in Cosplay

  • Code-switching: On Loki’s Survival in an Imperialistic Regime

  • Combating Online and Real Life Harassment

  • Cosplay in Non-Canon Bodies

  • Cosplay as Resistance

  • Gaslighting - It’s Real and You’re Probably Doing It ***NEW for 2019

Places you can find TaLynn:




New Wakanda Podcast


PayPal me.



Email: TaLynnKel@gmail.com

Books: Breaking Normal: Essays about My Fat, Black, Geek Life and Still Breaking Normal: A Fat, Black, Femme, Geek Navigating an Anti-Black World