Amanda Knightly, known by online audiences as Misa On Wheels, is one of the most prominent figures in the cosplay community. Diagnosed with Charcot-Marie Tooth Muscular Dystrophy at age 2, she started using a wheelchair when she was 10. But her fans see her as so much more.
What really sets her apart are her cosplay outfits, which she designs herself. Dressed as characters from everything from cartoons to comic books, she advocates for full inclusion for anyone wanting to do the same, regardless of physical ability, weight, body shape, or similar factors. She seeks to inspire others and prove that cosplay is for everyone.
A resident of New England, Amanda has a degree in psychology from Colby-Sawyer College, works full-time, and loves painting, crafting, video and board games, in addition to cosplay.
For more information on Amanda and to see her other outfits, visit her Facebook page
1. Describe yourself in 5 words.
Energetic, soulful, positive, quirky, happy.
2. What are you passionate about?
Making other people feel good. Cosplay. Cats. Goldfish. Especially showing others that they can be happy just the way they are: with just the life and the body they currently have.
3. If you could change anything in the world, what would it be?
Poor body image throughout our society and the negative view of anyone who is different.
4. What is your favourite quote?
"Pain is weakness leaving the body." Everything we endure makes us stronger.
5. Describe a challenge you have overcome and how you dealt with it.
I used to be very afraid of speaking up for myself. I took it step by step, at first, just speaking my mind and then getting over the fear of expressing what it is I want.
I was afraid of feeling like a burden or being viewed negatively, so much that these insecurities controlled me. It took a lot of heartache and disappointment before I learned that if I don't speak for myself and others like myself, maybe no one ever would.
You could say that this challenge has been resolved...and then some.
6. If you could remove one barrier what would it be?
7. What are you most grateful for?
My life. I am grateful for the good days and the bad alike. I am so grateful to be able to do what I love and for the person I am today.