Wednesday, February 06, 2008

12 Cartoon Rejections

Here at the Mike Lynch Cartoons blog, I try to be positive about cartooning -- particularly magazine cartooning. I've written about how cartooning requires a leap of faith in the beginning (The Cartooning Business); that selling one or two cartoons out of a batch of 10-15 cartoons is a good professional average (Cartoon Sales Batting Average); how to persevere, despite rejection (Mike Lynch College of Gag Cartoon Knowledge -- Rejection, Rejection, Rejection). But, occasionally, the Black Dog, as Churchill calls it, comes and gives you a nip, and you wind up in the doldrums.

Some people get depressed over the holidays. Cartoonists are no exception, seeing as rejection is all part of the profession. At least when we vent about it, it turns into a cartoon.

A number of Christmases ago, I mailed the above card to only a few cartoonist friends. All of these were true things that editors told me -- except for the last one. The last one is true, but it wasn't said by an editor. Here's the breakdown:

  1. Standard rejection letter phrase.
  2. A famous cartoon editor told me this face to face while looking at my work.
  3. An advertising client who thought I'd lost it after loving my first batch of cartoons.
  4. Better Homes and Gardens, etc.
  5. My mother-in-law. And she has a point. Color cartoons are better.
  6. Nothing like an editor who places his finger in your cartoony pie.
  7. Esquire Magazine.
  8. Rejection letter, Funny Times.
  9. See #2
  10. The New York Daily News.
  11. Several clients. Yes, really. They underestimate their audiences.
  12. My wife.

And there we have it! Gosh, whatta bitter person I am!!! I guess I drew back a nub after my encounter with the ol' Black Dog of Depression! You see why most people who want to cartoon professionally quit after an average of 6 months! Ha ha ha!

OK, now I get back to drawing ...


saturdaychick said...

Mike, I LOVE this card! Why don't I have one! You should make this into a poster. It's perfect! And all too true!!!

richardcthompson said...

Not only is it true, but it's funny, too, but in a way that makes me sorta cry.. Ever have someone say, with a perfectly non-laughing face, now why is this funny?

I find that, if I laugh at something I've just drawn, by the time I finish it and turn it in it's no longer funny at all. Somebody once said that making yourself laugh is the lowest form of comedy.


Mike, Funny Times. The only funny thing about it, is its name

Mike Lynch said...

A poster??? I don't know!!

Richard, I have had encounters with people who are outwardly hostile to cartoonists. When I'm asked what I do, I find that either the conversation becomes peppered with questions, or it dies a sudden death. The crummiest thing about cartooning is that people ask you about money. "How much do you get paid for a cartoon in Wall Street Journal?" etc. etc. Hey, that's danged intrusive!!!

I wish FUNNY TIMES would stop rerunning so many syndicated features and buy more from gag cartoonists. I mean, wouldn't an all David Sipress issue appeal?

Mark Anderson said...

This should at the very least be a t-shirt. I'm so glad to see this again! What a great idea!

Mike Lynch said...

Thanks for your kind words. Gee whiz. I really hesitated putting these dozen panels of negativity on the blog!