Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Catching Up

I've neglected my blog lately. No good excuse, really, although I have been busy (not superhumanly Jerry King or Glenn McCoy busy, but busy nonetheless).

I traveled to Ohio this past weekend to speak at a school library about children's books (I've authored a few over the years). I did a presentation with the very talented illustrator/cartoonist, Steve Harpster. Steve has illustrated several of my books, and we've also collaborated on a few projects that we hope one day to publish.

Check out Steve's most excellent work here.

Let's see...I also spoke at my son's middle school Career Day a couple of weeks ago, worked up 18 samples for yet another new comic strip proposal, and tallied up the rejections from my last two syndicate submissions (not HIS & HERS, but a couple of projects on which I collaborated). One project was rejected outright by all syndicates; the other may live on in some form at King. Who knows? Probably not. But we're still "talking."

Working on these various projects – books, comics —made me think about how tough working with people on various projects can be. Collaboration is not an easy thing. It involves cooperation, compromise, and, unless you find the perfect partner, concessions.

I must admit to having mixed emotions about teaming up with an artist or writer. It’s rare to find the likes of Jerry Scott and Rick Kirkman or Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman -- a team that meshes seamlessly and produces work of such singular vision. Most of us aren’t as blessed.

Cartooning is, by and large, a solitary pursuit. I'm not sure if that's because we cartoonists like to follow our own "vision," or if it's because we're just hopelessly anti-social. Maybe a bit of both.

Any thoughts? Do you like to collaborate? To work alone?

I'll be back soon with more news.