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United Media to launch new comic feature by Signe Wilkinson

United Media will be launching a new feature in January by Philadelphia Daily News editorial cartoonist Signe Wilkinson. The new featured, entitled “Family Tree” is described as a “topical without being overly political.”

In talking with Editor and Publisher’s Dave Astor, Signe indicated that she was approached by United Media’s acquisition and development editor Ted Rall to develop a strip and that the declining editorial cartooning market prompted her to consider this new feature as something that she has could control and believe in. She also wanted to add another woman’s voice to the comics pages.

Community Comments

#1 Charles Brubaker
November/21/2007
@ 6:59 am

At the Comic Con, Ted had samples of this strip out on his table (he was working on something). I recognized the style of the strip, which prompted Ted to put it away, but confirmed that it was Signe’s strip.

Signe’s a talented cartoonist, so this strip should be interesting.

#2 Chuck Sommers
November/21/2007
@ 1:40 pm

It’s nice to see the good ole boys network is alive and well in the cartooning world…it’d be nicer if they made room for or assisted in elevating some younger artists…

#3 Alan Gardner
November/21/2007
@ 1:45 pm

I don’t know if this is a case of “good ole boys network” or not, but maybe, just maybe this is a case of a syndicate gravitating toward cartooning talent that has a consistent track record – something that younger artists may not have.

#4 Lucas Turnbloom
November/21/2007
@ 1:46 pm

But Chuck, Signe is a woman.

#5 Matt Bors
November/21/2007
@ 1:53 pm

Well Chuck, The last artist they launched was me. I signed the deal when I was 23 years old. Should they go younger? United has also launched Richard Stevens and Tak Toyoshima into syndication–they could hardly be considered part of the “good ole boys network” you mention.

Signe is a good cartoonist. And if you bothered to read the E&P article you would see she has tried a few different comic strips in recent years, so this could hardly be described as being dropped in her lap.

I wish her luck. The comics page needs new talent.

#6 Lucas Turnbloom
November/21/2007
@ 2:16 pm

23? Dang Matt, you’re old!
;)

#7 Ted Rall
November/23/2007
@ 5:45 pm

To Chuck and everyone reading this,
As Matt wrote, I’m no ageist. Please rest assured that I, and United Media, doesn’t turn to any “old boys (girls?) network” when it comes to searching for new comic strips. It’s true that cartooning is a relatively small world, so I know a lot of cartoonists. But nothing is more exciting than coming across great work by an artist I’ve never heard of before.
I approached Signe because I thought she’d be right for the genre of comic strip we were looking for at that time. But if someone had submitted something great in that category, I might not have talked to her.
Also, it’s not up to us to “make room for” new comic strips. That decision falls to individual newspapers. My job is to find comics that newspapers want to publish, and that readers enjoy reading. In short: if you have a great comic strip proposal, don’t just sit on it. Send it in!

#8 Wiley Miller
November/24/2007
@ 6:27 am

Ok, here’s the real reason Ted has United syndicating a strip by Signe Wilkinson.
They’ve been having a torrid affair for the past year! I heard they meet on the train between New York and Philadelphia and go non-stop, if you know what I mean.

Let that be a lesson to everyone. If you REALLY want to get syndicated, you’ve gotta get a little dirty with syndicate executives! How else can anyone possibly break in? It’s GOTTA be underhanded dealings if you’re passed over.

#9 Tom Racine
November/24/2007
@ 11:45 am

That $#@!% jerk Ted! I’ve been having an affair with him for a year and I’m STILL not syndicated! And he never sends flowers anymore! Sigh…maybe my affair with Donald Trump will bear more fruit…

#10 Lucas Turnbloom
November/24/2007
@ 10:50 pm

Ha! Excellent suggestion, Wiley.
Alright, Ted — Dinner? You, me, McDonalds? Sky’s the limit.

#11 Lucas Turnbloom
November/24/2007
@ 10:52 pm

That invite goes out to you too, Wiley. We can discuss how the new Ordinary Basil series will end — over a supersized diet coke, with two straws.

#12 Chuck Sommers
November/26/2007
@ 12:12 pm

I stand corrected…thanks, Ted, for setting me straight…it’s nice to hear directly from the source…

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