A happy Christmas tale: Sometimes the worst afternoons can begin from the most innocent sequences of events. Christmas Day I went from drinking a glass of tea while making dinner to lying flat on my back on the floor from a pinched nerve. Guess what kids? Throwing your back out feels like getting stabbed from behind by one of those maniacs from Scream. Fortunately, everything I know about chiropractic care I learned from making these Ned the Nerve cartoons back in Texas.
Were you aware that there aren’t any internet comics good enough for the newspaper? Surely you’ve noticed that there is nothing out there that compares to the sparkling wit say, the Boondocks or CEO Dad. No? In Tuesday’s Seattle Times article “Comic artists use Web to ensnare readers,” Editor in Chief of King Features Jay Kennedy says he has yet to see an internet strip he would syndicate. Quote:
“Newspapers are still a mass media,” Kennedy said. “Online comics are not a mass media at this point. They are largely fan-based.”
What does that mean exactly? Newspaper comics don’t have fans? Hmmm, that would explain much of the drabness and regurgitated humor. So for you maverick comic writers posting your work on the internet and considering sending it off to the syndicates, a word of advice; giving them your internet numbers will surely only hurt you. Obviously, any level-headed business man would prefer to stake his dollars on an unknown property, and never consider something with a ready-made fan following. Sound silly? Not if you realize the syndicates aren’t thinking like a business. They know a threat when they see one.
And so do the syndicated cartoonists. As the article says, Scott Kurtz of PVP has creative freedom, a good living, and the gall to turn down an offer from Universal Press. Syndicated cartoonist Tom Batiuk of Crankshaft says the following on the subject:
“In a lot of ways, the internet is the big vanity press of the modern world. Anyone who wants to put anything out there can do it. But just because you’re blogging or you have a strip on a website does not mean a whole lot.”
You mean people are now able to have their work be seen and let quality be the judge? Incredible! But there’s really nothing to worry about, internet bloggers and comics aren’t significant because they haven’t gone through the proper channels in the media elite. Therefore they are not dangerous. Just ask Dan Rather.
For those of you that are local to Seattle, tonight is the Cartoonist Northwest Christmas party. It will be held in the usual room at the School of Visual Concepts, and as this will be my first CNW event in several months I’m hoping to see a good turnout. The time is 7:00 pm, dress is casual. Drinking afterwards, mandatory.