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Joseph Stands With Many is a Cherokee storyteller from Baltimore who wrote “How Wildcat Caught a Turkey” in the Trickster anthology, which features work by a number of area creators. He’s performed at the Smithsonian and other D.C. sites, but this is the first comic-book story he’s written. While one can’t really call him a cartoonist, perhaps we’ll see more comic-book work from him if the anthology is a success.
Washington City Paper: When (within a decade is fine) and where were you born?
Joseph Stands With Many: I am proud to have made it this far so I don’t mind saying when I was born—-1957 in Baltimore. My parents moved up here from New Orleans before I was born.
WCP: Why are you in Baltimore now? What neighborhood or area do you live in?
JSWM: I am in Baltimore because, well, I guess because I never really left for any length of time. I live in a neighborhood called Mt. Washington, full of beautiful old Victorian houses. I live close to Pimlico race track.
WCP: If you could, what in your career would you do-over or change?
JSWM: Not say the wrong things to the wrong people and not take things personally.
WCP: What work are you best-known for?
JSWM: I guess being a storyteller, but I had a previous life (a few years back) as an exhibiting fine artist. May even try it again.
WCP: What would you like to do or work on in the future?
JSWM: I want to expand my storytelling and educational programs business to a national level. I love what I do and I also hope I am teaching non-Indian people about my culture, that we exist and will continue to do so.
It would also be nice to be included in more books or even have my own book published. I would also like to do a CD or two or three .
WCP: What do you think will be the future of your field?
JSWM: I have watched other storytellers perform. Most all the non-Indian tellers (and some Indians) put on a show rather than tell a story, an overly scripted show. I even hear you can major in storytelling in college. The future, hmmm…? The stories of my people will always be there.
WCP: What’s your favorite thing about D.C.?
JSWM: I don’t live in D.C., but I do enjoy all the museums to visit. In Baltimore my favorite thing is hard to say… maybe steamed crabs.
WCP: Least favorite?
JSWM: In D.C., it would be the spaghetti-like layout of the streets. In Baltimore it is the horrible air quality in the summer.
WCP: Do you have a website or blog?