Hola Family & Friends
I hope everyone has had a bountiful day.
I dropped the ball and didn’t wish my Hanukkah friends happy Hanukkah, so Happy a-little-late Hanukkah. And Merry Christmas to friends & family that celebrate Christmas.
Sallie asked if cartoonists ever take a day off. When I was doing a lot of writing, and reading books on writing, the general mantra was to write every day. There was a book I liked a lot by Natalie Goldberg titled “Writing Down The Bones.” She believes it is important for writers to write at least 3 pages a day. I’ve read similar advice by Walter Mosley, author of “Devil in a Blue Dress.” A few friends have asked me about taking a day off. I think the fear is I’ll slip back into lazy behavior, where I begin to talk myself out of doing a cartoon because I may feel too tired, uninspired, or would rather watch YouTube. It’s a hard to know the right answer. When I was avidly writing, I wrote at least 3 pages a day no matter how I felt. Even if I hated what I was writing, I wrote the 3 pages. I think, for creative types, we’ve got to keep doing.
So, for me, creating a cartoon a day helps build that discipline muscle that marathon runners have to have: Go the distance, no matter how you feel, even if you feel like you’re going to die, or come in last place, keep on running.
It also helps me learn that a cartoon is just one cartoon out of thousands I will do. And it doesn’t need to be perfect. The cartoon will be okay, and represent me at my current skill level. For years I had tried to sell myself “above” my skill level, because I was ashamed of being a beginner, or ashamed I didn’t know something. But usually I just wound up treading water trying to keep my head above the waves.
I wish everyone a restful rest of your night.
Until tomorrow . . .
“No rulers were harmed during the making of this cartoon.”
“Let’s still be careful out there.”