The Art Of Trees - Or, "Why John Is Behind"

There is such a thing in syndicated comic strip land known as a "deadline". It is the day "you", the creator, are supposed to have your strips for the week submitted to "them", the syndicate that distributes your work to newspapers.

Because papers like to have the strips for review well ahead of the intended publish date, this deadline can be several weeks before the strip will run. John is supposed to be submitting Sunday strips 9 weeks before publication and Daily strips 6 weeks before.

Well, he isn't.

OK - it's not like he's behind enough to be a huge headache for the syndicate or get fined. (Yes, fined. That's what happens if, like Garry Trudeau, you are turning your strips in a week to 2 weeks before they run. - Although Garry is such a big fish he probably has a contractual exemption or something.)

But 6 and 9 weeks we ain't exactly at.

As a result I am asked an almost weekly question by my lovely spouse. "Why am I so far behind?! Why can't I get back on track?"

I don't always have an answer but this week I do.


Really great trees.

Trees you probably don't see in many other syndicated newspaper comics being produced today.

These trees:

And all the other really cool, gorgeous things John draws in Edison every day.

John is one of those "old school" artists who still produces the strip 100% non-digital. He hand letters every word balloon, draws every "gutter" and "panel" and uses brush and India Ink on Bristol Board. A comic colleague recently told John he considered him one of the finest "brush men" in the business.

I have to agree.

And if all that attention to detail - coupled with top notch writing - means that the strip is a little behind the publishing curve, well, I can live with that.

Until they start fining us, that is :-)

Don't forget to read Edison for free every day here.

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