One of the high points of MoCCA, at least for me, was getting acquainted with Jennifer Hayden, the author of Underwire. I love Hayden’s casual style and her good-humored approach to the large and small stumbling blocks of life, and it was a treat to finally meet her in person. She is currently working on an ambitious graphic novel about her experiences with breast cancer, and I was disappointed to hear that she will be working on it for a while yet, but then she turned me on to her diary comic, Rushes.
Diary comics are fascinating because they are glimpse into the minutiae of someone else’s life. Hayden’s comic has a certain amount of continuity to it—the family adopts a problem dog—but outside that story arc it is filled with the things we do every day: Getting together with friends, running errands, school projects, and at the moment, a home renovation project that is sure to provide some chuckles. Hayden’s life isn’t that different from mine, but somehow it’s more entertaining to read about these things than actually do them—especially when they are presented with wit and good humor. In other words, I’d rather read about Hayden going to the hardware store than go to the hardware store myself; some experiences are better when they are vicarious.