Stories of Hope is aimed at helping gather donations for the bushfire crisis in Australia. Submissions are closed, the book will be coming our way soon enough – I’ll certainly let you know! – and it will be eBook only to save on the costs of creating a paperback.
A friend asked me if I’d submitted, so I had a look. Hope, I thought, is not something that comes lightly. But then I watched Shawshank Redemption [yes, again], and realised hope isn’t always a bright and sunny ideal.
Hope is tough. It survives disasters, terrors, tribulations unimaginable. It lives in the tiniest cracks in our armour, in our tall walls, in our enclosed lives. It brings light to the darkness of a cave through the refraction of sun on water.
It brings life to a soul brought low. A smile on the face of a child as they see the world from an unadulterated perspective, which then refracts to those adulterated by life as a beacon. A beacon of hope, a reason to keep going.
Life is hard.
We know that. Disasters like catastrophic bush-fires that maim, kill, destroy can be ameliorated by hope, with help, and the understanding of all.
Vail the men and women who fight the beast that threatens their communities, vail the support crews, the ships and trucks and carters who brought hope and effort to bear against the dragon-back of fire that continues still. Vail to all those who undertake the care of the creatures who need care and attention. Vail to those who carry feed and water to the burned zones for those who’d starve and die without it.
I take my hat off to you all, and offer my profound thanks for your work and spirit.
If all I can do is offer support in small ways, I will. And I made a story for this purpose, a story of hope …
I’ll let you know when the book comes out. I’ll be buying one for everyone I know, that’s for sure. All proceeds to charity to support those who need it for a moment, so they can see that chink of hope building into the light of day.
Oh, and today is Australia Day. My sister’s birthday. A day of mourning for Aboriginal Australians, Invasion Day. It is a day of tension and unity, bonded by the land we love, the country we call home.