Lynda Barry

Able to Stay

From What It Is by Lynda Barry:

There  ARE CERTAIN CHILDREN who are  TOLD they ARE TOO SENSITIVE, AND there  ARE CERTAIN ADULTS WHO believe SENSITIVITY IS a  PROBLEM THAT CAN be  FIXED in  THE WAY crooked  TEETH CAN be  FIXED AND made  STRAIGHT. AND WHEN THOSE TWO COME together  YOU GET A FAIRY TALE, A KIND OF STORY WITH HOPELESSNESS IN IT.

I believe  THERE IS SOMETHING IN THESE OLD stories  THAT DOES what  SINGING DOES to  WORDS. They have TRANSFORMATIONAL CAPABILITIES, in the  WAY MELODY CAN TRANSFORM MOOD.

THEY CAN'T TRANSLATE YOUR ACTUAL SITUATION, BUT THEY CAN TRANSFORM YOUR EXPERIENCE OF IT. WE DON'T CREATE A FANTASY WORLD TO ESCAPE REALITY, WE CREATE IT TO BE ABLE TO STAY. I believe  WE HAVE ALWAYS DONE THIS, USED IMAGES TO STAND AND UNDERSTAND WHAT OTHERWISE WOULD BE INTOLERABLE.

IT SEEMS THAT HUMAN BEINGS everywhere  UNDERSTAND THAT A child  WHO IS NEVER ALLOWED TO PLAY will eventually GO MAD. BUT how do  WE KNOW THIS? AND WHY do  WE KNOW THIS? AND what  HAPPENS WHEN WE FORGET?

Let the Image Pull You

"When people try to write stories they tend to drag the stories behind them. They think the story and question it and try to arrange it into something understandable, which is no fun at all! It makes a person feel exhausted and cranky. The best way to write is to let the image pull you. You should be water-skiing behind it, not dragging it like a barge. Writing should take you for a ride."

- Lynda Barry