As with the start of every year, we are excited to embark on a brand new journey - full of opportunities to meet talented creators, to move our community forward, and to share the stories that will resonate with and impact readers, viewers, and listeners around the globe. This year, more than most, brings with it an added level of excitement, as Fanbase Press marks its 10-year anniversary of "Celebrating Fandoms and Creating New Ones" through comic book publishing, as well as daily reviews, editorials, interviews, and podcasts that span the pop culture spectrum and give voice to the themes, ideals, and people that make geekdom so exceptional.
Looking back at the past 10 years provided not only an opportunity for reflection on the wonderful individuals, talents, and hard work that have made Fanbase Press what it is today, but also a chance to identify *why* Fanbase Press exists, why our staff and creators put in the time and efforts that they do, and why we will continue to serve our community for another 10 years and beyond.
What we realized is that the answer is not exclusive to Fanbase Press. It's not exclusive to comics, to fandom, or even to the United States. Why do we do what we do? Because Stories Matter.
Stories Matter. It's a simple phrase, but one full of depth. Since the birth of humankind, it has been through stories that we are able to examine the essentials of human existence, to understand ourselves better and to grow and/or heal, to pass on importance values, morals, knowledge, and lessons to the next generation, and to connect with one another through empathy and compassion. Stories have always allowed us to communicate through truly universal means and continue to do so to this very day.
It also must be noted that Stories Matter in every medium. There's a connected ecosystem of storytelling in our world, whether it be through sequential art, movies, television, theatre, gaming, books, audio drama, or any other form. As noted by dear friend and esteemed colleague Dr. Drea Letamendi (Associate Director of Mental Health Training, Intervention, and Response at UCLA / Clinical Psychologist / co-host of The Arkham Sessions) in a recent LA Times article discussing our connection to superhero films, these stories "...are giving us a way to practice and explore really important emotional processes that we may not be able to examine in our everyday lives. If we can work through some of those emotions, it actually makes us more emotionally intelligent.”
No matter the medium, no matter the scale of the project, and no matter the experience level of its creator(s), we cannot deny the power and importance of narrative storytelling. We cannot deny the passion and hard work of storytellers whose stories demand to be told. And, we cannot deny the purely human connection that those stories forge with audiences.
With ten years and counting at Fanbase Press, and with full knowledge and awareness of why we do what we do, we know exactly how to begin the next ten years. On behalf of everyone at Fanbase Press, we invite you to take part in our 2020 Stories Matter initiative, as we strive to honor, advance, and support the creators and stories that have - and will one day - impact all of us.
In 2020, every aspect of Fanbase Press will focus on WHY and HOW Stories Matter. Every review, interview, and editorial will highlight the import of the content and/or creators they seek to examine. Every podcast episode will zero in on the impact of storytelling. Every title released through our publishing catalog will serve to resonate and connect with readers.
We invite our readers, listeners, colleagues, and friends to join the 2020 Stories Matter initiative by sharing why Stories Matter to you - as a creator and/or as an audience member - by using the #StoriesMatter hashtag on social media.
Tell us why particular Stories Matter *to you.*
Tell us why *your* Stories Matter and why you want to share them with the world.
Tell us *why* Stories Matter in helping all of us to understand other people, perspectives, and our place in the world.
Join us in sharing stories with one another, especially the stories that we each carry with us, day to day, year to year, and generation to generation. You are a part of humanity's story, and, no matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world.
“We don't read and write poetry because it's cute. We read and write poetry because we are members of the human race. And the human race is filled with passion. And medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for. To quote from Whitman, 'O me! O life!... of the questions of these recurring; of the endless trains of the faithless... of cities filled with the foolish; what good amid these, O me, O life?' Answer. That you are here - that life exists, and identity; that the powerful play goes on and you may contribute a verse. That the powerful play *goes on* and you may contribute a verse. What will your verse be?” ― Tom Schulman, Dead Poets Society
We will be making further announcements regarding Fanbase Press' 2020 Stories Matter initiative in the coming months. Thank you for the opportunity to have shared your stories for the past ten years. We look forward to the stories yet to come!
Barbra and Bryant Dillon, Fanbase Press co-founders