When I first decided that I wanted to try my hand at cartooning back in 2009, I knew I had a long way to go. You see, I didn’t even know how to draw at that point and had no assurance that I could learn to draw. So why become a cartoonist? I thought I had some ideas that were funny – simple as that, and cartooning seemed to be the right vehicle to get those ideas across. Plus, I’ve always liked cartoons, my favorites being the ones in the New Yorker and Gary Larson’s Far Side. Luckily, through a lot a work, I did learn how to manipulate a pencil well enough to make creations that to some degree resemble the things I was actually trying to draw – more or less – OK, less. So over the course of the next few months, I had a nice stack of finished cartoons. Now, what do I do with them? This was the dilemma. You can sell to magazines, you can try to get syndicated, you can get an established publishing house to print your book, or you can publish your cartoons yourself. There may be other choices, but these were the four that I was contemplating.
I must admit, my first intention was to submit to the New Yorker. That had been the plan from the beginning. I thought nothing could be better than to have a cartoon appear in their publication. I still feel that way. But as I read about how hard it is to get a cartoon accepted there, and how the editor has stacks and stacks of cartoons on his desk that he has to go through on a weekly basis, I thought about the odds and talked myself out of it. For one thing, I knew my drawings as far as the artwork weren’t that good. Plus, the New Yorker cartoons are the best of the best. Who am I to even think that I have a chance of having one of mine accepted?
In part 2, I’ll explain what happened next.