We think of our use of language as ‘fluency’. There are, however, congealed lumps floating in it and, if we look beneath the surface, often more lumps than liquidity. Put another way, most language is pre-owned. The previous owners are, as Gary Morson instructs us, often worth knowing about.
Hard — Cartoonist James Sturm finds out just how hard it is to get a cartoon in The New Yorker:
I don’t normally draw gag cartoons; I’m what’s now called a “graphic novelist.” I’m not really considering a career change, but I was dealing with the mid-career blahs and wanted to try something new. It takes me several years to write and draw a book. The book’s subject determines and limits what I can and can’t draw. I enjoy the process, but it’s a slog. I wanted more spontaneity in my creative life. So in March I decided to fill a sketchbook, 90 pages, with New Yorker-style cartoons—one cartoon a day for three months. No excuses.
Dan Nadel at The Comics Journal responds.
And finally… While were on the subject of comics…