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Stark Reflections on Writing and Publishing

Jun 6, 2024

Mark interviews Leigh Rubin about 40 years of his Rubes® cartoons and his latest book THINK LIKE A CARTOONIST.

Prior to the interview, Mark shares comments from recent episodes, and a word from this episode's sponsor.

Learn more about this self-publishing/WIDE-publishing focused cruise.

In the interview Mark and Leigh talk about:

  • The fact that in 2024 Leigh is celebrating 40 years of producing Rubes® cartoons
  • Some of the things that have changed since Leigh first started writing the cartoons - such as the way he delivers the daily cartoons
  • The tools that haven't changed over the years, such as the drawing instruments he uses
  • How far in advance the daily cartoons need to be sent in for syndication
  • The fact that Leigh rarely ever takes a day off from drawing something new for the cartoon
  • Leigh's book THINK LIKE A CARTOONIST and the story behind it
  • The various types of essays that appear in this book
  • Leigh's Cartoonist Pledge (inspired by the Boy Scout pledge)
  • The ease of sharing cartoons on social media without any compensation given to the artist
  • What a "workaround" is for cartooning
  • The challenges of when humor doesn't age well because of changing sensitivities
  • Testing the cartoons and deciding not to use certain ones that don't hit just right - (and the big stack of un-used cartoons that Leigh never submitted because they weren't funny enough)
  • And more . . .


After the interview Mark reflects on the idea of what Leigh calls a "workaround" and how a similar thing might apply to writers in general as well as the idea of testing cartoons and not publishing them unless the hit right.


Links of Interest:


Leigh Rubin is an accomplished author and cartoonist. He has written more than 20 books. 2024 will mark the 40th anniversary of Leigh's internationally syndicated cartoon, Rubes®, which is distributed by Creators Syndicate to hundreds of newspapers and media outlets worldwide.

His work has been featured in film, television, and advertising. Leigh also enjoys a busy schedule giving thought-provoking and entertaining presentations on art and creativity at conferences, as well as professional organizations all around the country.

In 2018 Leigh began serving at Rochester Institute of Technology as the college's first Cartoonist-in-Residence.


The introductory, end, and bumper music for this podcast (“Laser Groove”) was composed and produced by Kevin MacLeod of and is Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0