Just some conversations I’ve been having with myself over the Masters…
*Pakeha is a Maori word for white/european people
As our LGBT history has been so carefully destroyed–carefully, DELIBERATELY destroyed (and see how much confusion and ignorance THAT has caused) –you can see now how desperately important it is that those stories be told.
All of them. “They” can obliterate our stories, but they can’t make us go away. Keep up the great work.
Cheers! This weekend I helped organise a queer hui (meeting/camp thing) and we were trying to name the cabins after queer heroes from history – but it was soooo hard to find information about people that celebrated (or even mentioned) their queerness. I think you’re totally right that our histories have been erased.
“Why are YOU drawing their stories anyway?”
Because we need you to. Because not enough other people are. And to be frank some of us can’t draw/write for shit so need artistically talented people such as your fine self to do it for us!
Thankyou for all your hard work.
Cheers Alana, I could try and do interpretive dances about queer stories…. but I don’t think that’d work out very well. Comics it shall be.
Everyone’s got a voice, and if people don’t want to listen they best cover their ears rather than try to shut another up!
Oh my god? This is amazing. The fact that you’re trying makes it okay though. Nobody can do everything. The best person who can tell your story is you, and so, I think you have to do that, and make allowances for the others who can one day say theirs. Or something.
I know a bit how you feel, writing about trans stuff academically myself. The thing to remember is that there is no definitive account and every project has its faults. Be clear about your parameters, acknowledge the shortcomings, and be as ethical as you can. But don’t let those voices and pressures grind you to inactivity – it is easier (for you and everyone) to work with something than with nothing.
Yeh, I think this was a way of trying to own some of the shortcomings, and to be able to acknowledge that it is inherently flawed. I will keep pressing on with it tho… ’cause sometimes working with something (even if it is problematic) is better than no visibility at all.
this is what accountability is for. you do the best you can and when you fuck up (you will fuck up, anyone would fuck up, because nobody is perfect) you own it and make amends. and trying to cover everything is impossible, the best you (or anyone) can do is point out the limitations of your work and your perspective (everyone’s perspective is limited). you’re doing it right.
Phew yes, I think it’s been really helpful to express that I know that I’m not doing it all 100% perfectly. You’re right – I can’t ever do that. No matter how nice I think it’d feel to do so. Cheers!
Why? Because we need people like you to tell stories. Of course you can’t tell EVERYONE’S stories, because that’s EVERYONE’S job to tell their own stories. You can only tell the stories in your own head, those need to be told just as much as everyone’s.
Thank you for being one of my queer internet refuges <3. I love your comics and I've been reading them for a while, the rooster one makes me want to cry (in a good way)! Living in a small town can make me and my friends feel invisible, but when I read your comics I know we're not alone! Also, thank you for giving me some unintentional education on transmen; I have a friend who's a transman and any information that will give me a better view of his situation is appreciated.
Much love from another queer storyteller!
Awww thanks sooooooo much meghan!! That’s really really wonderful and heartwarming to hear. I am very grateful
I think you’re doing great.
I think about this all the time when people criticize Lady Gaga for being able bodied, white, middle class…yah yah yah. I think they can share our experiences of marginalisation, just in different ways.
You’re so on the money when you say that everything will be compromised. I reckon as long as you’re acknowledging it, you’re alright in my books
Thanks giang! You and Lady G are all right in my books too!
If it’s any help, I also draw myself without glasses, and I’ve been wearing them for years and years.
Ha! Good! I’m glad I’m not the only one!
I get this feeling. I know what it’s like to think, “what the hell right do I have to write this? What makes me think I’m qualified to talk about this?” But you know what? Just caring enough to want to make a difference, to make it better somehow, that’s what gives us the right. In fact, I’d argue that it gives us an obligation to talk about it. We can’t expect someone else to talk about our passions, right?
Right! I guess it’s just trying to find a way that does more good than not.
That’s how I felt writing our book. I wrote it anyway.
And we’re soo grateful that you did!
Please try, Sam. I need you to.
speaking as a brown, non-binary new-zealander…. go hard white boy.
and let’s not buy into the hierarchy of marginalisation, either. but that’s not to belittle the issue. i think it’s a very present issue here, and important to address. however, we can ALL only speak from the perspective given by our environment and experience. so long as you acknowledge that, and don’t claim authority over others’ experiences, you’re in the clear. and every bit of representation is a treasure. i feel acknowledged and made visible by your work…. and you’re even from the other island!!
‘heirarchy of marginalisation’ is really interesting, and I agree – seems very present here. I think it’ll be important to find ways to acknowledge that I’ll be framing the stories of others, and it’s just my interpretation. Hmmm. yes, all good things to think about.
Was cool seeing you this weekend too!
Yeah, you gotta try. It’s easier to crticise than to do.
Completely right! That is why some people are storytellers, for those who don’t or can’t tell their own story. (And besides, nothing is capable of including everything.)
I’m in my final year of secondary school, (high school), and my school makes us complete a Senior Portfolio– a 20 page research paper and art component on a global problem.
I chose discrimination against the LGBT community as my topic, and I’ve been struggling with a lot of the same things mentioned in this comic, and I think you’re right; we do have to at least try.
Thanks for the super-relatable comic, it cheered me up to know that I’m not the only one who worries about this sort of stuff.
Ah yay, great on my end to hear I’m not the only one too. Good luck with your portfolio too!
This is unrelated, but strangely I had a dream last night that I was in New Zealand, visiting you and Joe and dealing with wicked time differences. Um… Yeah.
Haha, crazy! Awesome! I hope we were good hosts to you!
hey I just wanted to clarify that technically while Pakeha is used that way in New Zealand in te reo Maori it means “those who are not of Māori blood lines” so thus is not synonymous with “white”.
Sorry to be nit-picky… still love this piece and your art… your style reminds me of a less dark and much gayer version of Jhonen Vasquez style.
Oh cheers – that’s a much clearer explanation! Thankyou. And thanks for the comparison! I looooove JTHM!
and invader zim… doomy doom DOOM!!!! Your room was and awesome room of epic awesomness!!! I was using it as my dressing room and kept looking at all your art, and movies and books and comics and all you needed to add to it to make it heaven would be some Role Playing gear….
Yay! That is so wonderful that it was a dressing room – wahoo! Role playing gear will be added next time you visit
Right! And as a queer person who appreciates people who identify along a wide range of gender and sex options, absolutely add to the story!
I feel you! It can be so hard making Things, things that need to be made, it opens you up to a lot of critique. It’s so much easier to critique, so thank you for being one of the makers. And echoing a lot of my own struggles.
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