I'm really excited to launch a blog concerning cartoon gagwriting! I plan to share my experience over the past 18 years and, hopefully, give my readers some valuable information about this type of writing. Just to tell you a little bit about my background, I've been writing gags for single-panel gag cartoons, syndicated and non-syndicated, for the past 18 years. Currently, I write for the syndicated cartoons "Dennis the Menace, "The Lockhorns" and "Bliss." Over the past 18 years I've worked with many non-syndicated cartoonists who submit to the most prestigious publications. I seem to specialize in business, relationships, medical and food gags. Cartoons, with my gags, have appeared in The New Yorker, Harvard Business Review, Barron's, Wall Street Journal, Reader's Digest, Better Homes and Gardens, First for Women, Good Housekeeping, Playboy, Hustler, the Chicken Soup for the Soul series of books and many other publications.
Just to let you know how it all began, my background is in the newspaper business. I started writing news and features for my high school newspaper and, in college, spent four years working on the campus newspaper, writing, editing, doing layout, proofreading. Everything but advertising. After college, mostly because I needed a job, I took a position selling print advertising for a group of suburban newspapers. I found out I really liked it. This became my career: selling ad space on daily and weekly newspapers. About 20 years ago I decided to get back to writing. I was always interested in humor, and started writing one-liners for speakers, comedians and broadcasters on a freelance basis, while working full time. Eventually, I could see that some of those one-liners could be turned into cartoons, with the one-liners becoming the captions. A whole new world opened up to me.
I taught myself how to come up with ideas for cartoons by studying cartoon collections and reading everything I could find about comedy and cartoon writing. I specifically looked at The New Yorker cartoon collections which were very helpful. I still read and study The New Yorker today. I also read the other publications I slant my gags toward. Honestly, I read all the time.
Next week I plan to start offering valuable information about how I come up with ideas and captions for single panel gag cartoons, how to write good captions, how to contact cartoonists and more. I can be reached by e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org.