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because stories give us hope

[Iíve been trying to get in touch with the author of the comic referenced below. My email to him was bounced back and his site seems to be gone. If anyone knows anything about the whereabouts of Jon ďBeanĒ Hastings, please contact me]

Thereís a trade paperback titled 9-11 Emergency Relief. Itís a collection of comics by rather well-known comic artists and writers sharing their stories of September 11.

Iíve read it at least ten times. Itís poignant, itís sad and at some points it is hopeful. I took it out again yesterday after I became emotionally beaten down while reading all of the stories sent to me for Voices.

I was struck by this one entry from Jon ďBeanĒ Hastings. I donít have a scanner handy at work, so I will just reprint the relevant words:

Basically, it starts off with Jon himself sitting in front of the tv, watching the news on September 11, 2001. A face that extends from the tv is yelling at Jon telling him that his cartoons are no longer important in the face of all that has happened.

How can you draw your Ďfunny booksí with all this carnage and sadness and pain and ruin?! the face shouts at him. To which Jon responds: Why ever bother picking up a pencil again? And then:


Because stories give us hope.

Expressing our thoughts and feelings is what gives us our humanity. Through stories we can share our grief, our outrage, our horror, but also our dreams, our memories, our hopes for the future.

Thatís what they canít take away and thatís what they donít understand. We are all more alike than we are different. We are connected by stories.

[Images of Jon turning off the tv and sitting down at his drawing table and these words above his head]:

---- All sorrows can be borne if you put them into a story....

óIsak Dinesen

This is what I had in mind when I created No Ordinary Morning last year and decided to carry on with Voices this year.

Because stories give us hope.

I wanted to get permission from Jon Hastings to use his comic on the Voices page, but he seems unreachable at this point.

Just go buy the book. Thereís so much more you should see in those pages.



Nise threat! Thanks for info!