As a cartoon gag writer, I spend most of my days looking for material. To find this material, I read a lot of newspapers and magazines, watch a lot of TV news, read stories on specific websites, read relevant books, etc. All this is pretty much done alone, either at home or at a library. But I realize more than ever that it's important to get together with others who understand what you do, are encouraging, can offer suggestions and help, and may be able to hire you. I've received some of my best leads concerning who I could write for from like-minded creative people I've met at social gatherings. It's really important to get together with others who do what you do, who even if they don't do exactly what you do, can be supportive of what you do. People who tell you you're a good writer or a good artist. This encouragement is necessary to keep on going when sales are down and the confidence level is at an all-time low.
So, I plan to follow my own advice. I know I have to get out of the house and be with people! I used to regularly attend events of the National Cartoonists Society in my area but, because of the distance and time involved, I've slowly drifted away from it. I plan to go back. The Long Island chapter of the NCS will be holding its monthly luncheon later this month and I plan to be there. The Manhattan chapter of the NCS will be holding their annual holiday party in December and I plan to be there. The New Jersey chapter is having a large get-together in January and I plan to be there. The relationships you make in pursuing any creative endeavor cannot be underestimated. I'll let you know how it all goes.
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