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Mixed Feedback, some good, some not so good

It’s been an interesting couple of weeks, I sent a draft version of my zine (The Big Bang) out to various people to get some feedback on narrative structure and content.

Turns out my siblings were not particularily happy with the content! I’m OK with that, we all have our own versions of our childhood and this is mine. We’ve agreed that they know what I’m up to but I don’t need to keep sharing it with them.

One of my brothers kept saying “what’s the point??!!” His view was that there was no point in digging up uncomfortable memories, and I completely accept that that is the right thing for him.

For me however there is a point. Or a couple of points.

Firstly, in our childhood I felt like a bit player in the ongoing dramas of our parents. I think my brothers still see my zines as being focused on our parents, or a hatchet job on them. But THEY are the bit players in this drama, I want to bring MYSELF to centre stage, it’s all about ME ME ME!

Secondly, as a child I felt buffeted this way and that by the various events. I had no choice in the matters directly affecting me, no control at all (for example being sent to boarding school at a young age). By creating my own narrative I’m taking back control of the events and recreating them in my own reimagined world, neutralising their power over me.

The full cycle of zines has the overall title of I am Sukey, Hear me Roar! (I was a very quiet child). It is going to be a long job to get through them all but I’m going to keep plodding on.

(draft cover for complete series of zines)

A third point was about my audience, should these zines be private or shared with the world? My feeling is that my potential audience is pretty niche within another niche, comic book readers who like autobiographical stuff as opposed to super heroes. I want to share it because it may resonate with other people who experienced stuff in their childhood they didn’t like. It is not sensational, headline grabbing stuff, more quiet reflections and thoughts, which others may find helpful and interesting. I don’t want to connect with vast numbers of people, just a handful, but those ones ARE important to me.

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