Some days I think my cartoons suck. I wonder how I managed to get my strip published. I am plagued by doubts and insecurities. When will everyone find out I can't do this?
Some days I think I'm a horrible mother. I know I'm a lousy housekeeper. I berate myself for not spending more time on decorating my home...or keeping up my garden...or seeing my friends often enough...or taking my mom out to lunch.
I lean on the ease of take-out for dinner too often. I don't exercise enough. I procrastinate over doing things that are new to me and take extra "thinking".
...my cartoons don't suck though. They appeal to some people and not to others. They appeal to me. They appear in over 150 newspapers around the world...for over 16 years. I achieved a goal that is difficult to achieve and I have a career that surpasses any career dream I've ever had. I'm proud of that and it gives me confidence.
Tim and I have two terrific kids. I really don't think we could ask for better. As a mother, I must have done something right. The house...some days it's good, some days it's bad...I don't think I'm really that different from any other woman with a family and a career.
My garden is getting there. The raspberry bushes died before I got them planted but I can always get more shoots from my parents' garden. I go out for dinner with friends every second month. It's all they can manage at this busy stage of life too. Also. Right now, I guess being stretched in too many directions is one of the ties that bind.
Mom...how does Greek food sound?
My family likes the way I make stew in my crock pot. When my son was younger and had friends sleep over, they all said I made the best French Toast in the neighbourhood. One mom even called me for my recipe but her son said it just didn't taste the same as mine. She told me the difference must be the love. My dad likes the way I prepare green beans. My nephew says my mashed potatoes are the best. My husband likes my broccoli and beef. See? I DO cook...
I really DON'T exercise enough. But I'm walking Newman more often. I keep trying. There was a sign on the club house wall of the golf course I worked at in high school...it said, "Success is not in never failing, it's in rising every time you fall." I keep trying.
The new things...isn't everything new these days? I took a college course in HTML. I'm reseaching a historical story for a graphic novel. I've actually been working at it for the past few years. In spurts...when I can...but I AM. I wrote about domestic violence in my strip...I was very nervous about doing this, it was such a departure from my regular strip writing and it took research...but feedback told me I did a good job. And I've learned how to text. (don't laugh...I avoided it for ages...now it's the main way I communicate with my kids)
I've created new revenue streams from my cartoons. Periodically, I'm hired to speak. I've started this blog.
The new me and the old me are really the same person. It's just that I see things in different ways on different days...and I'm pretty sure I'm not that different from everyone else.
Are you at work and looking for somewhere else to surf while you finish up your morning cuppa? Well, you can always read today's "Between Friends" by clicking RIGHT HERE
This seemed like a good comic to post this morning as I'm just finishing up some dailies and a sunday and then I'm off for the week...off to paint bedrooms and get my garden planted and a host of other house-related stuff. I was planning on grinding it last night until everything was finished but I noticed I was beginning to get sloppy. Better to come back this morning fresh than have regrets when I see the strips in the paper and grimacing.
I do have something interesting to tell you though...well, it might be interesting to you, it might not. I unexpectedly came across some extra copies of my book collection, "Hello, Daughter". This book is the complete collection of my Between Friends fertility and adoption story arc. I added some extra strips to help round out the story and I included background commentary on the influence behind some of the strips. There are also some letters from readers.
So, I thought I would set up a Paypal account and offer these books for sale in time for Mother's Day. I also have some copies of my book collection, "Coffee, Tea and Reality" which I will also make available for anyone interested in purchasing. Of course, I will be happy to sign and doodle in any book sold.
So, this is a heads up for a Mother's Day gift suggestion. I'll get back to you asap with the details!
I'm on my way to Toronto shortly to a meeting of the Canada chapter of the National Cartoonist Society. We're judging the Newspaper Comic Panel division for the upcoming Reuben Awards Weekend in May. Patricia Storms is our current chapter president and has opened up her lovely home to us for the afternoon. (as she always does...Patricia, you are wunderbar!) We have great bunch of members and it's always a fun afternoon.
Have a great weekend!
I forgot I can always throw up a cartoon when I'm too busy to post. This morning, I remembered. So, here you go.
It begins TODAY at 10 am Pacific Time. The next group of auction items will be up for grabs Jan. 28 and the final group on Feb. 4.
The National Cartoonists Society Foundation is hosting this E-Bay auction to assist the Hodges with medical costs for their son after a tragic car accident. You can read more details here.
So-for this week, I'm going to suggest that everyone inflate their egos and tell themselves that they are the best thing since sliced bread. One hundred percent whole wheat sliced bread...let's go with the good carbs, shall we?
And what if you really do do something stupid? Well...then cut yourself some slack. Tell yourself that nobody's perfect but hell, you're as close as they come.
This is one of the few strips I've written that was taken pretty much verbatim from real-life.
Working at home is great . . . but for those of you who go "out" to work for a living . . . I gotta tell you, you have no idea how many calls from telephone solicitors you have the good fortune to miss.
As in the above strip, when I asked a telephone solicitor (who was trying to get me to upgrade) for suggestions on cutting my bill, he replied exactly as I wrote in the fifth panel:
Uh . . . maybe we should just leave things as they are.
And then he hung up. Just like that.
If I'd only realized sooner . . .
"And You Think That's Funny?" is an exhibition that is presently featured at the Woman Made Gallery in Chicago. Its premise is described as "Works by women artists that are expressed in a humorous way." The exhibit is jurored by Nicole Hollander, creator of the comic strip, Sylvia.
I received an invitation to exhibit my work for "And You Think That's Funny?" but I only had a day or two to figure out what was necessary for me to do. Entering an exhibition is new to me and with anything new, I need more time to mull things over and decide what to . . . or how to do it. So, although I think it would have been cool to be part of this group show, I didn't manage to participate. Maybe next time.
My friend, Isabella Bannerman, the Monday Chick of Six Chix does have a piece in this exhibition though and Nicole Hollander also has a solo show at the gallery . . . so if you're in the area, go take a look.
Anyway, even though I didn't make the exhibit . . . I did get a cartoon idea out of it. I would have loved to send this piece to the Woman Made Gallery . . .
I don't know about anyone else, but I think that's funny. :)
I just wanted an excuse to post this cartoon so I'm going to respond to the comments posted under "Google Ads and Goals" here.
I'm rather fed up with google ads! They clutter up a beautiful page and detract from the message the writer is giving us. It is a visual detraction from the content of the blog.
I think it diminished and demeans a blog, and I am tired of advertising everywhere...
I don't like pages that are inundated with ads either...especially when they make it hard to look for the content the page is supposed to be showing. The thing is that the web is another venue for business and it's looking like advertising (as opposed to paying to view) is the way features are going to support themselves. It's the same as television with commercials and newspapers with ads. The trick is to blend ads with page content so that it is pleasing to the reader and beneficial to the advertiser.
I'm on the paying side of Google ads, and I'm charged for click-throughs, there being no real way to measure conversions. Presumably, if one of my ads popped up here and you clicked on it, Sandra would get a cut of what I would then be charged. Of course, I would be hoping that you clicked out of a sincere interest, but in this case I wouldn't begrudge the payout.
This is a good example in reminding me (or anyone) that there is always another side to the story. As I mentioned above, there has to be benefit to the advertiser to make the relationship work.
Sandra, how about sending me 50% of your earnings from Google ads? :D
Sounds fair! Where should I send the 50% of nothing? :)
"Today I noticed a google ad for Mammogram Screening."
It's a good on-line health service, but you have to have a scanner
Mike, Mike, Mike . . .
So, that's enough about the google ads. Someone posted a link toTom Richmond's blog (thanks!) where he discussed his experiment with google ads. With over 3000 daily hits, it didn't pay off for him . . . so I'm kinda thinking I have a long way to go here.
But . . . to get back to the win/win situation between advertiser and page host. There is one other person to take into consideration and that's the reader. So, if the content of the google ads hold no interest or benefit to you, you can always click on the widget in the top right corner of this blog. You get to read the Between Friends comic of the day and I get to make a little money because you did. :)
It's December . . . again? . . . ALREADY?
It doesn't seem to matter how I time things . . . things just seem to "happen" and life always gets crunched when the holidays arrive as I try to work it out so I'll get some time off. Last year, I tried for two weeks . . . I think I got one. I'm not even going to set any expectations this year. I'm just going to keep my nose to the grindstone and work. We'll see how it goes . . .
This week, I'm planning on writing four sundays, one week of dailies and one rough week of dailies.
. . . and put up Christmas decorations, clean out the family room, have ten girls over to spend the night for my daughter's birthday . . . man, it's Tuesday, I better get going . . .