The Bill Watterson Interview (Comics Journal, 1989)

If you loved Calvin & Hobbes half as much as I, you might enjoy this rare interview with its creator, Bill Watterson, from 1989.

And if you’re an aspiring artist of any stripe, this excerpt from the opening of the interview might be helpful.  Compared to other roads to success, Watterson’s was fairly short.  Yet even he, and his beloved comic strip, had to pass through (at least a little) failure and rejection before finding success.

From the interview:

“Upon graduation in 1980, he became the political cartoonist for The Cincinnati Post, an experience he remembers as relentlessly depressing but mercifully short. Unable to fulfill his editor’s fuzzy notion of what an editorial cartoon should be, Watterson was fired before the end of his first year. For the next five years, Watterson submitted comic strip ideas to the syndicates. Six were developed; six were rejected. United Features Syndicate was the most encouraging, and Watterson’s seventh development contract, this one with UFS, resulted in Calvin and Hobbes. Ironically, UFS declined to distribute it, saying they didn’t think it would sell. Universal Press Syndicate snatched it up and launched it on November 1985.”

Thanks for not giving up, Mr. Watterson.

c&h

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