In this installment of The Illustrated PEN, artist, writer, and author of the forthcoming I Thought You Hated Me (Retrofit Comics 2016) MariNaomi recalls a traumatic encounter she suffered as a teen, and describes how, years later, she still grapples with the aftermath of her experience.


MariNaomi is the author and illustrator of the SPACE Prize-winning Kiss & Tell: A Romantic Resume, Ages 0 to 22 (Harper Perennial, 2011), the Eisner-nominated Dragon’s Breath and Other True Stories (2dcloud/Uncivilized Books, 2014), critically acclaimed Turning Japanese (2dcloud, 2016), the upcoming I Thought You Hated Me (Retrofit Comics, 2016), and her self-published Estrus Comics (1998 to 2009). She is a SPACE Prize-winning graphic memoirist who founded and curates the Cartoonists of Color Database and the LGBTQ Cartoonists Database.

The Illustrated PEN is an online series that aspires to be at the intersection of literature, journalism, and visual storytelling, where images and words come together in an ever-emerging and essential creative form. We’ll feature fiction and nonfiction graphic narratives, comics journalism and illustrated reportage, stories of social justice and personal stories that can’t be told through words alone.