A Year of Good News 
Are you one of those who feel that last year we had more than enough of bad news? Then let me tell you about my book project.
I have always loved positive stories: whether in books I’ve been reading since I was a little boy or films I’ve been making as a grown-up, but above all, in real life, always trying to live it as best as I can. Still, the doom and gloom of the pandemic eventually caught up with me, too. At first it made me feel there was no way out of the mass of bad news that seemed to have taken over the world around me. But I was determined not to let the barrage of bad news get the better of me and set out to look for some good news.
  
I discovered that good news is actually not all that rare. Often it concerns tiny, seemingly inconspicuous acts and facts that might be found at the far end of your street just as easily as at the other end of the globe. Lots of good things happen every day but often end up buried under the weight of “big” events and dry news agency reports. So I’ve decided to put them under the spotlight and retell them in my own way. If you want to know more, check my video below, or read further:).
Admittedly, I’m not very good at drawing with crayons or on the tablet but I have managed to make a fully-fledged animated film using textiles. Maybe you’ve heard of it: it’s called The Kite and it is about the most important things in our lives – human bonds that not even death can sever. While working on the film, I also tried to find the silver lining in a difficult, sensitive subject. Taking The Kite as an inspiration, I decided to use discarded clothing as the medium with which to depict the good news that I had come across in the media. 
I started by making the occasional image for a close circle of friends. But when I saw how my stories lifted their spirits, I decided to cheer them up with an illustrated good news story every week. Now, after a year’s work, I would like to share the good news with you, too.
An 11-year-old boy moved from England to Palermo, Italy. He had not seen his grandmother from London for over a year during the lockdown. As all the flights to London were cancelled due to the pandemics, he decided to walk. His parents first told him “No!” for 50 times until his father finally agreed to go with him. They walked across Italy, Switzerland and France, they got lost a few times, got bloody feets, fought off wild dogs and slept under the stars. After 93 days, 2.800 kilometres and two weeks in quarantine, they made it to Trafalgar Square so Romeo could finally give a hug to his granny who couldn't believe her eyes.
A father who wanted to spend Christmas with his daughter bought tickets for all six flights she worked as a flight attendant so they could be together on 24th and 25th of December while flying around the country.
Since an 85-year-old grandma Joy admitted to her grandson Brad that she’d never seen the ocean or mountains, they have travelled all over the United States, covering 40,000 miles and visiting 62 national parks. Grandma Joy is now 91-years-old and she is still travelling with her grandson.
My book consists of 52 good news stories from around the world. Some go further back in time, others are more recent than the “pandemic” year, 2020. You can order the book in English from the store of Monokel publishing house or directly at obchod@monokel.ooo
I’d love to continue in my work, so if there’s a positive story that recently caught your attention, I’d be happy if you shared it with me. Also, I’d like to encourage you to become a messenger of good news yourself and spread the word about our book in your country, as we’d love to have it available in foreign languages, so that it could help readers all around the world to reclaim their positive view of the world. And if you wish to order the book or send me your comments, please also drop me a line! In any other case – happy reading everyone!
Italian professional cyclist Davide Martinelli uses his bike to deliver food and medicine to elderly residents in his hometown Lodetto in the Lombardy region of northern Italy. The village has neither a pharmacy nor a supermarket, so Martinelli makes a daily trip to Rovato, the next town over, to pick up supplies. “I wanted to help the people who always support me during the season. It’s time to give back to them.”
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