Here is the heart of my story, about three-fourths of it. I don’t know yet how it’s going to end (I welcome suggestions):
There is a young woman of dark features and exceptional beauty who suffers a deep melancholy. She picks fruit from the lemon tree, but it does not console her. She bakes bread in a large oven but it does not relieve her hunger or the hunger of her children. Her name is Karmen and she has bad dreams. Those who know her can bring her no comfort. They don’t know what she’s feeling. They’re not aware of how her dreams disturb her sleep each night until she must rise and go into the garden and sift the dirt for something, over and over digging into the soft dirt for nothing she can understand. What is it? Her few friends bring her little comfort, for she is reluctant to confide in them. She hears screams, she sees bloody corpses, dismembered children, grieving women and anguished men. She passes through destroyed towns, neighborhoods raked by explosions, livestock decomposing, monuments and buildings burning, the sky black with smoke.
Karmen works in the large house in the pretty neighborhood with the lemon trees and the acacia bushes in the beautifully landscaped garden. She’s the cleaning lady, from a foreign land, uneducated and unfit for more profitable work. Her infant son and daughter, twins, are always with her in the house as she manages her chores in a state of exhaustion from lack of sleep. She has visions of a man who speaks beautifully of love and faith, brotherhood and peace, who gives her a vision of God broader than the one she knew as a child. But it is not a man of love and faith who comforts her, only a thief whom she finds hiding in the garden, who charms Karmen and deceives her.
I’m hoping to tell this in a kind of folk-tale style using one of three forms:
1. A graphic story (comic). My plan would be to photograph actors in scenes from the story – the woman, the man, the garden, etc. – and convert the digital photographic images into comic panels using Comic Life.
2. A combination of …
a) still images (1 or 2 photos) appearing on the site during the playing of an audio file which is that of a young woman (the Karmen of the tale) telling her story, what she’s seen, heard, etc.; there could be interviews with others involved, perhaps her friends, perhaps the man in the garden …
b) also on the page would be a short poem in the form of a litany or chant or other repetition of phrases, focused on one or more elements from the story;
c) a short video of a young woman in a garden, with the camera focused often on her eyes, mournful, pained, searching; no dialogue or voiceover, but there would be a soundtrack of some music, perhaps Donald Byrd’s “Christo Redentor.” (Hey, do I need authorization for that? It’s certainly protected by copyright. The site won’t be available to the public, will it?)
3. the whole story told in a series of interviews … with both text and audio …