Janni Lee Simner

And today’s writing takeaway, from Castle in the Sky (because there just might be a Miyazaki festival going on at our local theater):

Making someone care about a whole world–even a floating world, shrouded in the most beautiful clouds ever drawn, even a world that can fly–is hard.

But make me care about one character living in your world–say, a giant gardening robot who cares about protecting birds’ nests and is a friend to fox squirrels–and I’ll care about your world too, utterly and completely, because what happens to the world, happens to that one character, too.

Secondary takeaway: Flying is awesome. We should all do it as often as possible.

Mirrored from Desert Dispatches: Wordpress Edition.

 
 
Janni Lee Simner

Two years ago today, my sister called me from two thousand miles away, asking if I was okay, because she heard there’d been a shooting in a Tucson grocery store. I laughed. “Tucson’s a big city,” I said. “We have lots of grocery stores.” I assured her that whatever had happened, it had nothing to do with me.

Ten minutes later I was scanning news sources and twitter feeds, trying to figure out whether or not my congresswoman was alive.

Gabrielle Giffords survived, but six others didn’t. In Tucson we remember their names–Christina-Taylor Green, Gabe Zimmerman, Judge John Roll, Dorothy Morris, Phyllis Schneck, and Dorwan Stoddard–and this morning we rang bells in their memory.

Neither the survivors nor the victims’ families pressed for the death penalty, and because of this our community was spared a lengthy trial that would have changed nothing. In doing so, they gave a gift to all of us, and I’m grateful for that.

Meanwhile, today, while a couple hours north of us another county’s sheriff is sending armed volunteer posses to patrol schools, former Tucson congresswoman Giffords and her husband Mark Kelly are launching an initiative to find more responsible solutions to gun violence.

I can’t think of a better place for this to begin, or of better people to begin it.

Mirrored from Desert Dispatches: Wordpress Edition.