Making of


In March and April 2013, I’ve backpacked across Iran: A trip due to curiosity only, and an idea which emerged over many years. When I left for Iran, I still wasn’t sure whether I would stay for five days and go on to Turkey quickly or whether I would use up my 30 day visa. I never expected extending my visa by another 30 days. And I certainly didn’t expect to write a book about this trip.

But during my journey so many things turned out to be so different from what I had expected before, that somewhere along the way I started to write it all down. And I returned home with a backpack full of presents and discoveries, a camera full of images and impressions and a diary full of experiences, some answers, and many new questions.

All of this became: THEY WOULD ROCK.
A personal travelogue of a journey beyond common images – and a book that inspires to explore. Created and realised within one year by a committed team of volunteers. Supported by the publishing house GUDBERG NERGER.


The Author

THEY WOULD ROCK is the first book I wrote on my travels – which have taken me all over the world: from Colombia to Patagonia, through Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, India, Bhutan, Indonesia… At home and throughout the world, I work as a freelance facilitator, creative coach and author with organizations, teams and individuals in (social) innovation and transition processes. More here.


Frizzi Kurkhaus works as a designer and filmmaker. Without knowing that she would design a whole book about my journey, she already sent her creativity with me on this trip by designing a very special page in my travel diary beforehand.

The Supporters

Many people have supported THEY WOULD ROCK on a voluntary basis. Above all: the journalist Julia Camerer, the Iran expert and guidebook author Hartmut Niemann, the consultant Rufus Henneken, the photographer Benjamin Nadjib, the designer Hilke Koll, the lawyer Katarina Altrogge, the actress Neda Rahmanian, and the GUDBERG NERGER team.

Editor, text & drawings: Helena Henneken * Design: Frizzi Kurkhaus * Copyediting: Julia Camerer, Rufus Henneken, Hartmut Niemann, Inga Wassmuss * Photography: Helena Henneken (Iran), Benjamin Nadjib (presents) * Typesetting: Hilke Koll * Publishing House GUDBERG NERGER GmbH



Helena Henneken

Helena Henneken

Helena Henneken

Helena Henneken

Helena Henneken

Helena Henneken