So you can read my books

Thursday, June 20, 2013


George Herriman’s “Krazy Kat” comic strip debuted on this day in 1910.

Simple-minded, curious, mindlessly happy and perpetually innocent, the strip's title character drifts through life in Coconino County without a care.
Krazy's dialogue is a highly stylized argot ("A fowl konspirissy – is it pussible?")
phonetically evoking a mixture of English, French, Spanish, Yiddish and other dialects, often identified as George Herriman's own native New Orleans dialect, Yat

It’s never been easy to make a successful comic strip, but it’s even harder these days. Shrinking newspaper space, shrinking interest in newspapers — heck a decline in newspapers in general.

Have you lost any favorite comic strips lately?

The print industry is dying. Newspapers were the first to sink with magazines following close behind. Now books are dying as well.

One problem with the dying newspaper industry is that comic strips are disappearing as well.

In the old days, every newspaper had a comics page so every newspaper was a potential market for a new comic strip.

Even Berkeley Breathed, whose “Bloom County” strip was once read by 80 to 100 million people daily during its heyday in the 1980s, said that he got out of newspapers

because they were collapsing. “I’ve always been behind new tech, instead of dismissing it outright.”

The last strip of LITTLE ORPHAN ANNIE left the orphan, still nine-years-old, stranded in Guatemala with all hope of recovery lost.

The comic's last words were, "And this is where we leave our Annie. For now — "

Not exactly a pick-me-up.
Words Crafter:

introduced me to SIMON'S CAT, the feline relative of Wiley E. Coyote.

Let's hope for a long future for SIMON'S CAT!


  1. If comic strips are dying, as are newspapers and mags, some of them are morphing into other venues online.

    Perhaps it's the dependence on staff writers who sit at a desk, rather than getting out into the world as many writers did in Hemingway's day. Perhaps it's because they get their info off a news service where incorrect grammar and unchecked spelling are abundant. No more proofreaders or copyreaders, either.

    Is it the short attention span of today's readers, who keep their eyes glued to a mini screen so they don't get newspaper ink on their hands? Is it because the rat-a-tat method of delivery that is preferred doesn't fit with a newspaper which can't do in print what can be done online? This is called progress.

    Technology is designed for efficiency and efficiency has no heart. We should get used to it.

  2. I do check out Simon's Cat when someone posts a clip.
    We haven't purchased a newspaper in years. My favorite strips included The Far Side, Calvin and Hobbes, and Bloom County. (And back in the day, Prince Valiant - remember that one?) All of those are gone and I never found anything to replace them.
    So maybe comics aren't dying so much as changing.

  3. Alex listed my favorites: Calvin & Hobbes and Far Side. I LOVE Simon's Cat and I'm glad you do, too!

    As a child, I waited impatiently for the paper. I'd read Dear Abby, the the comics. If I buy a Sunday paper (for coupons), I read Parade, a few features, and save the comics for last. Like dessert. Oh! I also loved Garfield.

  4. D.G.:
    I believe you're right: digital comics will be the next stage. Technology evolves our entertainments.

    I miss the daily reads of CALVIN & HOBBES, PEANUTS, and GARFILED. Sigh.

    Words Crafter:
    As a child, I would read Alley Oop, Flash Gordon, Peanuts, and Dick Tracy. The comic section was first for me! :-) I do like SIMON'S CAT.

  5. Traditional comic strips might be dying, but not comic strips in general. The amount of webcomics online is endless! (That's how it seems to me, anyway, as a webcomic reader and creator...heh.)