I’ve been drawing since I was 4 years old. In that time I have had one driving dream: To appear in the newspaper’s comic page. I never quite found the right hook for a comic strip, and never really tried. I knew I needed to do something different, something that would really stand out. I never though my mazes would ultimately be what got me there!
The odds of syndication are very very very very slim. Thousands of hopeful cartoonists submit every single year and less than a handful will get picked up by a syndicate. Some cartoonists will try years, decades, trying to break in. Less than 1 year after leaving my job to pursue that dream, it happened. Like magic. Suddenly. From the time I submitted to the time I had a contract was two weeks. It really was magical. I feel lucky and grateful that Creators Syndicate took a chance on me.
To be clear about my dream. My dream wasn’t to be a billionaire cartoonist in the funny pages. It was just to be in the funny pages. You do not get rich doing this. In fact your first year you may make under $50 bucks total! So bother pursuing it if you are doing it to make money. Do it because you love it. Because you want to see your art on the same page as your heroes. Don’t do it because you need work to live. Do it because your work is your life.
You work on your cartoon a few months out and then it just goes out there somewhere. As a new feature I am only in a few papers thus far. So when my cartoon ran for the first time… I didn’t see it!
Well today the Jefferson City News Tribune in Missouri was kind enough to send me a few pdfs of the funny pages and there I am… on the same page as my hero, Charles M. Schulz. the very reason I became a cartoonist and longed to be on the funny pages.
What does it feel like the first time you see yourself there on the comics page?
It’s one of the greatest feeling in the world. A feeling that you have reached your life long goal and yet know there is still so much journey left. But from here on out you are a syndicated cartoonist and there is nothing quite like the feeling of pride you get knowing somewhere out there a kid in Missouri is solving your maze right after reading Peanuts.