There’s nothing that makes us happier than when we hear from New Orleans and Gulf Coast locals that A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge rings true and in some way resonates with their own story. The second anniversary of Katrina brought quite a bit of attention to A.D. but it’s extra special to see a discussion about our webcomic on the popular blog Metafilter. Here, posters offered sentiments like, “[A.D] captures the spirit of the city, its neighborhoods, and the people in a way I’ve not seen elsewhere, and with great economy” and “I’m halfway through chapter 2, and even though I know what happened - in the general sense, at least - I have this ohgodwhatsgoingtohappennext feeling. Reckon I’ll be crying soon.”
As the thread continued, some readers were moved to tell their own Katrina stories. Our motto at SMITH is “Read a story. Write a story.” That’s the hope, really, that some of what you read here, whether it’s about Hurricane Katrina or an odd job you once had, inspires you to tell your story. After all, everybody has a story.
Also on the New Orleans storytelling tip: friend o’ SMITH and filmmaker (Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism, WAL-MART: The High Cost of Low Price) Robert Greenwald has a new film about New Orleans, When the Saints Go Marching In. Saints tells the stories of some of the tens of thousands of people who, plain and simple, just want to return home. These are folks still scattered across the country, many in FEMA trailers, still more wondering when the 77,000 rental units will begin to be rebuilt. Two years after Katrina, we know that New Orleans is still hurting badly; yet person to person, story to story, Saints offers a painfully personal perspective on the assault on the humanity of a city. Check out a clip.