comic strip superstar: complete failure

Apparently the fine folks at Amazon and Universal Press Syndicate never received my envelope full of cash: I did not reach the Top 10 finalists in the Comic Strip Superstar contest. Making the top 50 (out of thousands of entries) is nothing to sneeze at; I’m happy with the recognition. It says something that I reached that summit after creating a comic strip on two weeks’ notice. Not bad for a rush job.

As promised, I’m making my entry, Tortilla Flat, available for you to read.

Tortilla Flat is a completely new strip. It stars fraternal twins, a brother and sister, living with their grandmother in the suburbs of Phoenix, Arizona. The twist (known in writers’ circles as deus ex machina) is, the grandmother spends much of her time visiting a moa bird who lives in her backyard. Moe can speak perfect English, yet he refuses to help Grandma out with her daily crossword puzzle. I can almost hear Garry Trudeau giggling from here!

I hope you enjoy this complete failure of a comic strip. I’m thinking about reworking the premise a bit and making a formal submission to syndicates. Suggestions will be taken in the order in which they are received. (Unless it’s a right hook; I always duck those.)
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Discussion (4)¬

  1. Andy says:

    Your moment will come, friend.

  2. Slider K. Shaftacular says:

    This is all so terribly good. Tough to decide, but I think there's a lot of potential with this cast of characters that's worth further exploration. Figure out what you want to do. Maybe later I can throw some non-cartoonist perspective your way.

  3. Alec Longstreth says:

    When I came home from Australia after trying to work on Star Wars, I also used the words "complete failure" to describe my endeavor. It is a description born of frustration.

    I would be a bad friend if I did not point out (as all MY friends pointed out to me, upon my return to the states!) that this project was not a failure by any means. Your comic may not have been selected, but I have no doubt that you learned a lot about yourself and your craft in meeting this deadline and creating this new strip.

    You never know how things will work out. Perhaps the chosen strip will run for a year and then be canceled, whereas ideas you generated in this process may be published for a much longer span.

    I still think the best thing to come out of this is that you were chosen as one of the top 50 (FIFTY!) amateur cartoonists working in America. That's amazing Josh. It seems to me that it'll only be a matter of time before you hit on the right idea which'll send you up to the big leagues.

    Keep at it man, and don't be too hard on yourself!

  4. Kid Shay says:

    Thanks for all your kind words. I'm a little bummed but otherwise OK with the outcome. It was a good experience overall. My own October post-season.

    I really would like to work some more on this concept, so I'll be in touch when I have some concrete ideas. Any feedback you care to share in the meantime would be super awesome.

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