I’ve played a large role in discouraging personal writing in posts on Sequart in the past months, only because how we feel and who we are intrudes on objective analysis of a text or work. I don’t believe that it is possible to understand a text apart from our experiences, but we can all attempt to be objective once in a while. This time of year is the exception. It’s Thanksgiving after all.
This past September marks my two year anniversary working, and writing, for Sequart Organization. Life back then was coarse and bothersome. I had quit my job working retail for a high profile technology company to take a full time position as a bank teller, which of course didn’t pan out. In desperation I quit, and took the first job I could find washing dishes in a restaurant that my friend worked at. Though “rock bottom” can be lower for some, a highly educated college graduate working minimum wage in a kitchen was pretty rock-bottom for me. It was during this time that I discovered Sequart Organization.
I was taking writing seriously by then, and a friend advised me to start a blog and get a Twitter account. Not a week later, I was added by Julian, Mike, or whoever was tasked with social media projects at the time. My first article, a recap of the New 52 initiative by DC Comics, posted in November, but I had started working on it as early as September. I went through several drafts, bought comics for research, and had my wife look it over just in case I had missed something. I believed that what I was doing was special, and so I treated the opportunity with diligence.
That is a good word to describe who I am: diligent, mostly because I am very self-conscious and insecure. I was always raised to work hard, hide my emotions, and plod forward. My love of Nordic mythology and heavy metal encouraged my romantic fantasy of loyalty and productivity to my new taskmasters, Julian and Mike. I also turned out an entire series on Neil Gaiman’s Sandman and several one-shot articles on superhero comics. Now I am an editor and proofreader for Sequart Organization’s expanding book line. I owe it to Julian, to Sequart Organization, for giving me a job and making me a better writer.
Sequart Organization has changed the way I look at comics, academia, and genre. The writers and contributors that have strengthened Sequart along its 18 year journey define Sequart Organization as a safe haven for brave ideas and perspectives. Despite some ideological differences along the way, what Sequart promotes is invaluable for fostering dialogue between people from all walks of life. There are some pieces of work that need to exist because they are special insights into what humans strive for and attempt to understand. I believe that many articles, films, and books that Sequart has released over its lifetime fall into this category. This is why, when I am asked what I do for a living, I do not say that I work for a regional craft brewer on a packaging line. Instead, I proudly say that I work for Sequart Organization, a non-profit dedicated to promoting comics as legitimate art.
On the eve of Thanksgiving, our strange American holiday where Americans loosely attribute what my great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandfather John Alden brokered with the first Native Americans he encountered, we often reflect upon what we are most thankful for. With all the opportunities Sequart Organization has extended to me, the experiences that I have shared with Julian and Mike, it behooves me to extend my hand to the Sequart community and say a heartfelt “thank you.”
You all are what make Sequart Organization so great.