November 16th, 2009
by Terri Libenson
I imagine that, having a cartoon based semi-loosely on life, it can be confusing to readers as to where the strip ends and reality begins. For instance, when I wrote about the character, Rob, getting laid off back in March, many concerned readers and friends asked if my flesh-and-blood husband similarly lost his job (which he didnâ€™t).
Likewise, last weekâ€™s light-hearted story arc about Jillâ€™s new haircut drew a similar (if more subdued) reaction. Folks wanted to know if I, too, got hacked. The answer is no. Often itâ€™s just creative license.
But then there are real life occurrences that end up making it into print. Although I rarely write verbatim, documenting my realities in a humorous light can be pretty cathartic. For example, a few years ago I discovered (after months of driving my family nuts) that I had PMDD, or Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder. I needed to go on a mild antidepressant to ease the symptoms. I wrote a small story line based on my wariness about taking the drugs. Or an even better reality scenario: Robâ€™s vasectomy series (man, my husbandâ€™s a good sport).
Soon Iâ€™ll be developing another medical-based story line modeled after real events. Letâ€™s just say itâ€™s been a tough month. From my warped cartoonistâ€™s mindset, a sane way to put closure on that episode is to expose it to the masses. If anything, to give myself a laugh. Hey, someoneâ€™s gotta be entertained, right?
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