"Faith, it's an Uncertain World Entirely"
My name is Bill Messner-Loebs and my wife is Nadine. I was the writer on the Flash, Wonder Woman, the Batman Newspaper strip, the Maxx and Epicurus the Sage, and writer-artist for a series called Journey, the Adventures of Wolverine MacAlistaire. I am 69 years old and my wife is 80.
We lost our home in August of last year. There was a gas leak and the little, aging trailer was condemned by the county. We tried to buy another trailer or a regular house, but our credit score was pretty dismal and as we went from house to house and park to park, each time they pulled the score it lowered. Our bank won't give a mortgage on less than $85,000 and our credit score won't support that. My career writing comics sort of petered out in the late Nineties. I've been working as a delivery person for Panera Bread and as a fill-in janitor for my local church, plus doing sketches and covers at local conventions. Those things, plus Social Security, kept our heads above water. Then the gas leak drove us to try living in our car. My wife had open heart surgery a couple of years ago and cataract surgery, plus therapy on her knees so she can continue to walk at all. She is in constant pain. Past, present and future medical bills loom pretty large. This Winter we moved into a homeless shelter run by our local churches. Since our story appeared on Fox2 News I've gotten offers to do more artwork, but with two jobs it's hard to find the time. And search for a house. Livingston County doesn't have much affordable housing, but we are trying to stay within commuting range of Brighton, Michigan since this is where my jobs are, our friends, churches and doctors are. We have been trying to pay off past debts to raise our credit score, but that could take years. It looks like we will have to buy a house outright if we can find one reasonable enough, or one with a land contract. We're afraid to take temporary housing, that will exhaust what little savings we have and those saving, we just discovered, make us ineligible for state housing vouchers.
But people have been kind and helpful. I have the offer to script a series called "Cadaverman" and a couple of other independent comics, but they are months from becoming established. I would be able to be more productive if the housing situation were more stable. Which it's not.