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What the Press has to Say

“In the tradition of Art Spiegelman’s “Maus,” the contrast between the heavy subject matter and the comic form of illustrated panels and word balloons plays out like beautiful, sad music. It lingers long after the final notes have sounded.”

Review from the LA Times.

 

“…this original and devastating memoir of love and loss illustrates the value of hospice and presents caring for others as a sort of tragicomic ‘Olympic sport’.”

Starred review from the Library Journal.

 

“…this is a powerful debut with a deeply resonant story about living with the seemingly impossible.”

Review from Publisher’s Weekly.

 

“In the end, a serious joy pervades Things to Do. In my decades of reading the hospice and palliative care literature, I cannot think of a single book that would be a better companion for family members beginning on this particular work of caring.”

Review from Science Magazine.

 

“This book broke me in two.”

Podcast Conversation with Dan Stanford from needtoconsume.com

 

“This is fierce, brave, and astonishing storytelling, with the heart of a prize bull indeed.”

Review from A Place to Hang Your Cape

 

“‘Things to do……’ is a an impressive work touching on the taboo subject of death and its effects and the final page is one of the most powerfully bitterweet images in sequential art.”

Review from Backseatmafia.com

 

“Since I found myself asking the question [Why comics?], I decided to put the same to friends and colleagues in the industry and find out why they were doing it.”

Blog Post about why people choose to work in comics for the Waterstones Blog

 

“The inventive symbolism never overwhelms the emotional honesty grounding this compelling memoir, which also contributes to the burgeoning field of ‘graphic medicine’ by exploring in both frank and funny terms the complex impact of illness and death on a family.”

Paul Gravett’s review for the Times Literary Supplement

 

“Last weekend, hundreds of thousands of fans of bandes dessinées – French for comics – descended on the southwestern French city of Angoulême. Nye Wright, creator of our weekly exclusive comic strip, Sprout’s Book Club, was there. He tells us why, if you like comics, you should be there next year too.”

Blog post recapping the Angouleme Comics Festival for the Waterstones Blog

 

Things to Do In A Retirement Home Trailer Park is a quiet masterpiece that acts like an emotional Trojan Horse, sneaking in and yanking on your heartstrings before you realise what’s happening. About as beautiful and poignant a take on the relationship between a son and his father as you’re ever likely to see. 10/10″

Matt Clark’s Review for Paradox Comics Group

 

“At the heart of Things To Do lies … an everyday story of life, death and family. But through Nye’s emotionally driven scope it transcends into something indescribably huge, human and heart wrenching and warming at the same time. It’s in this way that Wright has captured the essence of how moving real life can be for everyone and everything in this world once put in the right story structure and imagery.”

Arnold Thorton-Rice’s Review for Dude Meister Blogs

 

“With such a deft touch and the ability to soak so many complex emotions into each page, Aneurin Wright’sThings to do in a Retirement Home Trailer Park… deserves a place next to the richest memoirs as well as the most vibrant fantasies.”

Review of the book and talk given at Edinburgh Bookfest The Arts Journal

 

“It [the act of creating a graphic memoir] may look like a courageous act but it really came out of an act of self preservation.”

Interview with Scottish Journalist, Marianne Wheelaghan

 

“Wright’s facility with words qualifies him as a first-rate writer, the kind who can put emotions to poetic prose and make it look effortless…. This is not your average comic book.”

From an interview and examination of the book by Michael Ames in Sun Valley Guide Magazine

 

“Inventive, extraordinary and memorable.”

David Lloyd, Co-creator and Illustrator of “V for Vendetta”

 

“This is a real gem of a book, something to help reflect on real life and even wrapped up in its graphic novel casing and with its animal characters.it’s worth a read.”

Gary Watson review excerpt from Comics Anonymous

 

“Aneurin (Nye) Wright is a graphic author and animator whose work includes the cartoon sequence in ‘Bowling for Columbine’. In 2003 his life suddenly changed when his dad rang him to wish him a happy birthday and remarked in passing that he had 6 months to live and was going to a hospice.”

Interview excerpt from Carers’ Week UK

 

“As far as specifically getting into comics, I just really like telling visual stories. I love film and animation and would love to tell stories in those realms too. But there you need thousands of dollars and armies of collaborators. Comics allows me to do the whole thing myself, in my own time under my own terms. And there’s just something really satisfying about picking up a book and saying to yourself ‘I made that.’”

Gary Watson interview excerpt from Comics Anonymous

 

“…. Mixing fantasy with the unflinching reality of living with a dying relative, the graphic novel combines tragedy, comedy and pinpoint observations of modern life, from unthinking neighbours to the caring professionals dealing with death on a daily basis. And what makes the eight-year labour of love stunning is that it is a real-life memoir, based on Wright’s own experiences caring for his father as he died a slow death from advanced stage emphysema.”

Interview and review excerpt from the Argus

 

“I wish I could say that my decision at the end of 2002 to move in with and become full-time carer for my father in the last six months of his life as he succumbed to emphysema came from a deep well of saintly altruism. In 1998, I moved to New York to go to art college and become an illustrator. After working for a small but formidable animation studio for almost a year after graduation, I was laid off. Rent was $900 per month. Unemployment benefits, the first and only time I’ve taken them, were $800 per month. My father had recently been certified for hospice, had six months to live and now needed full-time care. My sister and mother were gainfully employed. The math was pretty simple.”

This is a piece I wrote on becoming a carer for the amazing national UK newspaper, The Guardian.

Point of View excerpt from the Guardian

 

“My dad, Neil, had been a smoker for 50 years. He’d started taking oxygen in 1996 but the gravity of his emphysema didn’t dawn on me. In 1999, he had the most diseased parts of his lungs removed. In 2002, aged 67, he was told he had six months to live.”

Interview excerpt from London Metro

 

Things to Do is not just a poignant study of the complexities of the father-son dynamic or of coming to terms with parental mortality, it’s also an often very funny memoir. Not least because of Nye Wright’s portrayal of his father’s irascibility, his own self-deprecating wit and some choice moments of darkly humorous dialogue. Honest, inventive and resonant, this is a confident and impressive debut; a remarkable breakout work that speaks to the reader on many different levels and, even this early in 2012, one that I suspect will be on many people’s best of the year lists in just under twelve months time…”

Andy Oliver, excerpt from brokenfrontier.com

 

“…The act of writing the memoir is an act of decoding meaning through connecting dots and reporting back on what has been found.”

This is a piece I wrote on memoir and graphic memoir for the online bibliophile paradise, welovethisbook.com.

Pictures of Grief and Hope, welovethisbook.com

 

In conversation with Sean Rocks, Arena Radio Programme on RTE Radio 1, Dublin, February 17th. The interview begins at 15:30.

Radio Interview, RTE Radio 1, Ireland

 

Things To Do In A Retirement Home When You’re 29 And Unemployed is a beautifully crafted graphic novel about a father and son who learn how to understand, accept and forgive each other, and themselves, as one life draws to a close and another begins. Drawn with compassion, sensitivity and humour, it offers an emotionally honest insight into the impact of a terminal disease on everyone affected by it.”

Pam McIlroy, excerpt from pamreader.blogspot.com

 

In conversation, The Danny Pike Show on BBC Radio Sussex, Brighton, February 15th. The interview begins at 2:11.50.

Radio Interview, BBC Radio Sussex

 

“When Aneurin Wright’s ‘Things to Do in a Retirement Home Trailer Park When You’re 29 and Unemployed’ dropped through my letterbox it sounded like a bomb had gone off. Delving into the graphic memoir’s incendiary contents only confirmed that what I now had in my possession was one of the reasons Kindle and their ilk won’t put paid to the printed word….”

Mike Cobley, excerpt from The Brighton Magazine

 

“This week I’m speaking to Aneurin ‘Nye’ Wright, whose autobiographical Things to Do in a Retirement Home Trailer Park *…When You’re 29 and Unemployed I gave deserved high praise to in a Broken Frontier review last month. Centred on the time Nye spent as primary carer when his father was dying of emphysema, it’s a sometimes deeply poignant, sometimes very funny account that mixes slice-of-life storytelling with unfettered, symbolic fantasy….”

Interview with Andy Oliver from brokenfrontier.com

 

“At 306 pages, the result is a strikingly unusual and daringly inventive addition to the arena of autobiographical, reconciliatory comics by siblings about their sometimes difficult parents, and to the burgeoning field of ‘graphic medicine’ exploring in both frank and funny terms the real, complex impact of illness and death on the the whole family.”

Paul Gravett, excerpt from paulgravett.com

 

“This is one of the most involved and affecting portraits of how terminal illness affects both the afflicted and the survivors that I have ever seen, and Wright’s naked emotional honesty makes it work.”

Marc Mason, excerpt from comicsworthreading.com

 

Podcast of a talk I gave at Myriad Editions’ First Fictions Festival in January 2012 on The Dangers of Autobiography.

Podcast, First Fictions

 

Podcast of a talk I gave at the Leeds Graphic Medicine Conference in November 2011 on Comics: Illness, Stigma and Community.

Podcast, Graphic Medicine