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Amazon releases third round finalists in Comic Strip Superstar contest

Amazon has announced those that have survived the second round of judging in their Comic Strip Superstar contest. The third round is suppose to have 50, but by my count there are 51. Those advancing to the third round include:

  1. 2 Cups
  2. Above â?©theâ?© Fold
  3. Beingâ?© Dad
  4. Belle â?©Plaine
  5. Büni
  6. Casual â?©Friday
  7. Counter Culture
  8. Doubtingâ?© Thomas
  9. Evenâ?© Odder
  10. Evilâ?© Twin
  11. Fecklessness
  12. Girl
  13. Haystack â?©Rock
  14. Hemlockâ?© Heights
  15. Joe� 6�Pack
  16. Justus
  17. Landfillâ?©
  18. Lifeâ?© Of â?©Lou
  19. Lilâ?© Wit
  20. Lost â?©in â?©Transition
  21. Loveâ?©Sick â?©- The Comicâ?© Strip
  22. Magnusâ?© Magifix
  23. Meanwhile…
  24. MIMIC
  25. Mothâ?© and â?©Ethan
  26. mycartoons
  27. Night â?©Shift
  28. Nutzâ?©n’ â?©Doltz
  29. Outâ?© of â?©the â?©Groove
  30. Peggyâ?©
  31. Poets
  32. Popel
  33. Risibleâ?©
  34. ROOTBEER
  35. Seth â?©and â?©Buddy
  36. SHORTâ?© NOODLES
  37. Sliversâ?©
  38. Soggy
  39. Stiwâ?©Kit
  40. Stoneâ?© Road
  41. Strings â?©Attached
  42. Stuffed
  43. Texasâ?© Road â?©Stew
  44. THATABABY
  45. Theâ?© Bear â?©Minimum
  46. Theâ?© Other â?©Kids
  47. Tortilla â?©Flat
  48. Unfinished â?©Melody
  49. Walkingâ?© Upright
  50. Wick

UPDATE: Back to 50. “Love Sick – the comic” was accidentally wrapped into two lines. It has been corrected.

Community Comments

#1 Tom Dell'Aringa
October/12/2009
@ 3:42 pm

It’s a shame they release this stuff as a PDF. Are they aware that this is the internet? That hyperlinks exist?

They could really be helping out all the cartoonists, not just the ones who win, but putting out an LINKED list of each strip, especially at this point. That would have given a nice boost to all of them at least for a bit, not just the eventual winner.

Am I being too cynical in pointing out that this just exposes how much these guys just don’t get things? Even for the sake of their own contest, you’d generate more interest by linking out, letting people visit and comment there and create more buzz about the contest.

But no… we get a PDF to download, and that’s it. Stupid.

For the record, I am not entered in the contest.

#2 Ioannis Milionis
October/12/2009
@ 3:44 pm

No, it`s 50. You counted “Love Sick – The Comic Strip” as two different entries.

At least I suppose, that “Love Sick – the Comic Strip” is one title and it`s not “Love Sick – The ” and “Comic Strip” ;)

To my surprise, I`m still in with mature dark humored single panel comics “mycartoons” and my friend Thorsten Trantow with his kids/family friendly comicstrip “Popel”.

#3 Ioannis Milionis
October/12/2009
@ 3:50 pm

Sometimes I hate myself for typing fast and not checking what I wrote. So many errors…

@Tom: Yeah links would be nice or even some names or websites being named in the list. I suppose they won´t even put links or the websites of the 10 finalists on the amazon website.

But I hope they will at least display the creator`s names together with their strips when they put the 10 finalists online for the voting.

#4 Tony Piro
October/12/2009
@ 4:16 pm

You see Tom, the idea is to force people to download the PDF, copy and paste the comic titles into Google, and try to search the comics in question. It may result in less people visiting your site, but the value is that they must REALLY want to find it. It all makes sense really!

#5 Jesse Cline
October/12/2009
@ 4:21 pm

Tom, I think the point of these PDF’s is just to let entrants know whether they were cut or not. It is a little Spartan, but its better than no list at all.

#6 Jesse Cline
October/12/2009
@ 4:53 pm

And also…

Congrats Mil and to everyone else who made it!

#7 Shane Davis
October/12/2009
@ 5:03 pm

OK, I’m telling myself I was #51.

There is no evidence to support that, but look how Gore’s mind twisted off at the axle after he lost HIS little contest a few years ago. I don’t wanna get fat, grow a beard and give lectures on postmodern nihilism, so….

Whatever it takes, right?

I was #51, folks.

#8 DAN LONG
October/12/2009
@ 5:04 pm

Congrats to those who made it, but yeah, too bad they’re not going to provide links to your work.

It’s almost like the syndicates aren’t in touch with the new generation of comic readers or something.

(snicker)

I’m not in the contest either, for the record.

#9 Daniel Boris
October/12/2009
@ 5:14 pm

Just wanted to add my congratulations to those that advanced to the next round. Good job!

My personal favorites:
Stew Kit by Scott DaRos
Walking Upright by Jesse Cline

Best of luck to everyone!

-Dan

#10 Ross Klettke
October/12/2009
@ 5:18 pm

Shane Davis–
Looks like we have a tie at #51

Congrats to everyone who advanced!

#11 Jim Thomas
October/12/2009
@ 6:09 pm

One reason why they might not link to the work is because not all the work is probably online. I know my entry isn’t. I think this keeps the contest level, personally. Although I do admit that I have googled the hell out of that list. In two weeks we will all see the top ten together. I think that is the spirit of the competition. Good luck to the other 49!

#12 Scott DaRos
October/12/2009
@ 6:32 pm

Thanks again, Daniel. Congrats to everyone who made it, it’s an honor just to make it this far! For those interested I made an animation based on Stiw Kit about a year ago. Just type “Stiw Kit” into YouTube =)

#13 Stephen Beals
October/12/2009
@ 7:20 pm

Congratulations to those who made it! I’m not surprised about mine since I only had time to submit previously rejected material, but it was fun to do this. To those who didn’t make it, realize that Gill didn’t get syndicated. Man, if they don’t think they can sell Gill we’re in trouble.

#14 josh shalek
October/12/2009
@ 7:25 pm

I’m excited to be one of those on the list. My contest comic isn’t online because it is brand new, but my older, non-award-winning comic is on my website.

Congratulations to all the other semi-finalists. You all rock.

#15 Isaiah McAllister
October/12/2009
@ 8:06 pm

I wish they provided links to the work as well. Don’t they realize the whole foundation of the internet is laziness.

I can’t be bothered to google all of those! :(

#16 Jason Boneasaurus
October/12/2009
@ 8:15 pm

Congratulations to all! Apokalips (www.MyApokalips.com) didn’t make the cut, but we look forward to following the finalists.

#17 Joshua Skurtu
October/12/2009
@ 8:29 pm

I made it to the top 50. Now I’m scared.

I’m #42, STUFFED.

Congrats to everyone else that made it.

-Josh

#18 Joshua Skurtu
October/12/2009
@ 8:32 pm

Oh, and Allan, if you want to add my website like to #42, it is http://www.theohnozone.com.

These aren’t “Stuffed,” so be warned. :-)

Gracias.

-Josh

#19 Rich Diesslin
October/12/2009
@ 11:13 pm

Congrats to those moving on! Best of luck!

#20 Julie Negron
October/12/2009
@ 11:35 pm

The submissions were supposed to be unpublished works – even if they were part of an ongoing series. Many were new ideas and not part of what the cartoonists had already posted. Therefore, there are no links available. However, it would be great to have the names of the creators attached to the semi-finalists’ list so we can give them their earned kudos.

#21 Jason Nocera
October/13/2009
@ 8:09 am

This is a business. Why would they want to link to other sites besides Amazon? I think they’re doing this to sell books, not to promote 50 or more up and coming cartoonists.

#22 Frank Mariani
October/13/2009
@ 9:01 am

Didn’t make the cut for “Clinton’s Ditch”, but remain extremely interested in how this plays out. Haven’t seen a lot of the 50 survivors’ work, but am familiar with Mike Cope’s work (Above the Fold) and want to wish him and all the rest many sleepless nights for the next few weeks. Congrats to all.

My strip is at:
http://www.marianidesign.com/Pages/HumorousillHome.html

#23 s.m. chavez
October/13/2009
@ 9:34 am

Congrats to those advancing!

It appears that indeed “Love Sick – The Comic Strip” was broken into two lines. Best of luck to all the semifinalists!

http://lovesickcomic.com

#24 Tom Dell'Aringa
October/13/2009
@ 9:42 am

Sell books? This is for a syndication contract, not a book.

Linking to the artists, *whether their material is online or not* would allow potential fans/readers to *connect* with those artists. To begin building a reader/artist relationship. If this were to happen each round, at the end the eventual winner would already have a little bit of momentum going.

See, it’s about building a relationship. Making connections. This would in fact BENEFIT not only the winner, but the syndicate.

This is really basic stuff, and I am stunned that people still don’t get it.

#25 I.D. Bergren
October/13/2009
@ 10:00 am

@Tom

indeed. I did some reviews of webcomics (one is on this list) and the most important thing i looked for was a willingness to communicate. i’ve met some cool people from that experience. it’s surprising that Amazon doesn’t seem to care if anyone actually sees the strips or at least find out who the creators are.

#26 Jason Nocera
October/13/2009
@ 10:10 am

Tom and others – this is sponsored by Andrews McMeel Publishing and hosted by Amazon.com. They want to sell books. Did you happen to notice that the links provided to G.B Trudeau, Lynn Johnston, Scott Hilburn and Mark Tatulli all link to books on Amazon? Did you happen to notice the other link is “browse bestselling comics from Andrews McMeel.”

It’s a contest that drives traffic of comic readers to a site that sells comic collections. They want to keep all that traffic for themselves.

Amazon is in the business to sell products… not to support independent creators. Why would they care about promoting anyone except the final winner? There will be only one collection for sale after this contest is over – and the amount of sales from that collection is the only thing that matters to Amazon. (Well, that and other sales that may result in comic fans going to Amazon to check out the contest and perhaps buying something in the meantime.)

#27 Les Taylor
October/13/2009
@ 10:11 am

Tom (and others) that’s a good point, but there could be more to the story. It’s certainly possible they just didn’t think about it. This is the first contest, so maybe they’re just testing the waters and seeing how things go. I think there can be some grace involved.

But let’s assume this was a purposeful action. Perhaps in their minds it would encourage people to look at online comics more than print comics, which would, at current form at least, not be to their advantage overall. It might be to their advantage as concerns the winner in this specific scenario, but not in the grand scheme. Or perhaps there is another reason that I am just not experienced enough to understand.

As it is, I don’t know the reason. A link to my work would definitely be welcome, but it doesn’t bother me a ton regardless.

#28 Alan Jones
October/13/2009
@ 10:15 am

wow, congrats everyone! What a cool contest! Maybe I’ll have enough decent material myself to submit if they ever run another contest! Links or not. Getting stuff syndicated ultimately — that’s sweet.

#29 Jesse Cline
October/13/2009
@ 10:16 am

“Sell books? This is for a syndication contract, not a book.”

Part of the “prize” is a $5K advance on a book deal. And a development deal is not a syndication contract.

#30 Tom Dell'Aringa
October/13/2009
@ 10:16 am

I fully realize they want to sell their other book collections, but if they think this kind of contest is going to drive gobs of traffic to sell McMeel books, well I don’t know what to say.

Isn’t the point of the contest to pick a comic for syndication? Isn’t the point to make that comic a success? Or not?

Are you telling me these comic artists are shills for book selling?

Which is it? Are they picking a comic to syndicate or just pushing existing artist books? If they are just pushing books, do they actually think this is a good way to do it?

Who here bought a book because of this?

Are we beginning to see the problem here? Look at how confusing this is from OUR perspective. What does this look like to the public?

#31 Tom Dell'Aringa
October/13/2009
@ 10:20 am

@Jesse – sure, but that book is a LONG way down the road. You need to build what, a year of strips first? The contest will give you a month’s worth. Then you have to continue on and be successful for a year, and then it has to be worth their while to publish that book.

I don’t think the book is a guaranteed part of this equation. Correct me if I am wrong. But if 6 months down the road, your comic isn’t selling and you aren’t producing on time, you’re probably a bust.

Meanwhile, tell me how selling this one book that might happen benefits driving traffic to said page on Amazon where this book is NOT even there yet.

Tell me how not linking to people – including the eventual winner, benefits anyone at all – anyone.

I’m suddenly struck with the realization that I don’t really care how badly this is being run. I don’t know why I’m even pursuing this argument which to me is completely self evident.

#32 Julie Negron
October/13/2009
@ 10:29 am

@Tom – I agree. Names would be great. Even though they’re not allowed to post the work they submitted, I’d at least like to see the various styles of each cartoonist. Plus, word of mouth is the all-important factor in building a fan base.

#33 Les Taylor
October/13/2009
@ 10:30 am

Tom, the only way I can think it might benefit someone is if the syndicate considers it a threat to support webcomics in any form. Is it possible this is what the syndicates think?

#34 Jesse Cline
October/13/2009
@ 10:33 am

“Tell me how not linking to people â?? including the eventual winner, benefits anyone at all â?? anyone.”

Since the top ten is up to voting, it benefits people who don’t have a website or online presence. Someone with an online archive of 200 really solid strips might generate a lot of buzz and have an advantage over someone with no site at all. People might see that comic and decide they like it and are gonna vote for it before even seeing the other 9. Obviously that could happen with or without links, but I think Amazon is attempting to mediate it by not posting links to the creator’s site. Plus like I said originally, the list is just to let people know whether they were cut or not. If you notice, they already took down the 250 one.

Now on the other hand, if they linked to the sites that didn’t quite make the cut, I would totally support that.

#35 Jesse Cline
October/13/2009
@ 10:45 am

“Meanwhile, tell me how selling this one book that might happen benefits driving traffic to said page on Amazon where this book is NOT even there yet.”

I have no idea, nor do I care. I was merely pointing out that there is a book deal involved. And Amazon sells books.

#36 Les Taylor
October/13/2009
@ 11:02 am

“Since the top ten is up to voting, it benefits people who donâ??t have a website or online presence”

That’s a really good point Jesse … I had not thought of that, but it would kind of make it unfair for those who don’t have an online presence.

#37 Shane Davis
October/13/2009
@ 11:06 am

Anyone ever hear how many strips were originally submitted? I know they had a 5000 limit, but it seems unlikely they had that many…

#38 Jim Thomas
October/13/2009
@ 12:43 pm

I am sort of surprised at some of peoples near anger about not having website links. This is a contest that takes place on Amazon’s site. Showing the fifty’s sites (not that they all have them) that are selected does not benefit the syndicate or Amazon or the contest at all. When the ten are chosen, the work will be shown and the 10 strips that make the finals will benefit at that point. This isn’t a charity or designed to benefit all amateur cartoonists. It is a competition. Links are not included because that isn’t part of the competition. The top 10’s work will be seen and voted upon, that is the deal. It was never not the deal. The idea is for the voting to be based on the submitted work. Why does this seem unfair?

Are there better ways to run the competition, maybe. But that isn’t the agreed upon set of rules. This is the way it is. It is just two more weeks, deep breathes.

#39 Jim Thomas
October/13/2009
@ 12:58 pm

@ Tom
How does it benefit the syndicate to link to 49 comics they aren’t syndicating? I seriously cannot comprehend why they would do that?

I can see the benefit to the individual cartoonists, but they can post their link in this forum of in the Amazon Contest forums if they choose.

Once the winner is picked there will be plenty of opportunity to promote that cartoonist. The rest is wasted effort on their part, as they have no financial gain from non-syndicated cartoonists.

#40 Jeff Cernauske
October/13/2009
@ 1:04 pm

Looks like I didn’t make it into the top 50. My submission can be seen at http://www.hyena-studios.com/jeff_cernauske_shepherds_grace.jpg. I am looking forward to seeing how this plays out. Congrats to all who participated.

#41 mike witmer
October/13/2009
@ 1:08 pm

I’m kinda put off by the bashing of this contest. I know this is a cut-throat business, but wow.

#42 Scott Metzger
October/13/2009
@ 2:25 pm

I want to nominate #5 for Best Title: Büni.

Why? Because it has an umlaut in it. I have no idea who draws Büni but I’m picturing a guy in Germany thinking to himself: “Das ist der Komedy Gold!”

I’m not making fun of Büni. The umlaut thing is breaking the mold and I like it. Good luck.

#43 Julie Negron
October/13/2009
@ 5:16 pm

I think the contest was fun to take part in and exciting for everyone who entered. Those who got moved up are excited, as well. The politics of it can be dealt with later.

My rejected submission is located on my website at
http://jennyspouse.com/TheOMalleyGirls.html

It’s something I was still developing when the contest came along. I made it through to the first 250 but not the 50 so I’m allowed to bare my soul now.

Enjoy! :-)

#44 Eddie Pittman
October/13/2009
@ 5:26 pm

I understand both sides of the “links” argument being made here, but I think the main issue of not having links (or visuals of the strip) is the audience of this contestâ??and yes, there is an audienceâ?? can’t participate. The whole event has the air of American Idol or Survivor, yet the people following can’t get a feel for the contestants.This is a visual medium after all. If that’s the way they want to run it, good for them, but why not just wait until there are 10 finalists or less and THEN announce.

But what do I know, I’m just a cartoonist.

#45 Peter Gullerud
October/13/2009
@ 5:53 pm

I didn’t impress Lee Salem and company. But good luck to those of you who did.

#46 Les Taylor
October/13/2009
@ 6:16 pm

For what it’s worth Julie, I really like your comic. I think you had a strong submission. :)

#47 Jim Thomas
October/13/2009
@ 6:25 pm

@Eddie
But there will be participation.

The top ten will have bios, pictures of the artist and their submissions. I think that they just don’t want the contest swayed by extraneous material.

#48 Garey Mckee
October/13/2009
@ 7:49 pm

Hey Julie, I love your strip too! “I remember to take the pill, you don’t” is a great line. All the writing is very focused. I think you did a great job!

I’m with Mike too, there’s been alot of nay saying during every step of the way with this contest. Relax people, the sun WILL come up tomorrow.

#49 Rene Bakewell
October/13/2009
@ 8:57 pm

Comfy Kozy will not be joining you guys in the next round but I am still very glad I entered! This contest pushed me to turn a little pile of post-its into strips! It’s been fun!

Good luck to the top 50 and to all passionate cartoonists!

Hey Jesse, I was happy to see your name on the list! Good Luck to you and Chester. It was nice meeting you. I posted a new strip on my blog about not making the cut if you’d like to see.

#50 Eddie Pittman
October/13/2009
@ 11:35 pm

@Jim Thomas
Thanks for the clarification. Glad to hear that.

#51 Brian Martin
October/14/2009
@ 9:10 am

“Creek” didn’t make the top 50 either…

This is a very strong list of talented artists. CONGRATS to all who made it and I really look forward to seeing who wins this thing.

GREAT JOB EVERYONE….

#52 Rene Bakewell
October/14/2009
@ 10:15 am

OMG Creek yes! I LOVE that one. I was really surprised not to see that one on the list!

#53 Rene Bakewell
October/14/2009
@ 10:27 am

Oh Sorry Brian… I read that quickly and just responded. I should have addressed my comment to you. I love your work. I couldn’t believe you didn’t make it. I see yours as proof that those of us who didn’t make the cut should not take it personally. Those who made it should be proud, but those who were cut need to realize that they may take things in consideration like…. we already have enough ONE PANEL cartoons, or we have enough DOG cartoons, etc. It may not have been based on the art or writing.

I hope no one is discouraged by elimination. Keep drawing everyone!

#54 Tony Piro
October/14/2009
@ 11:38 am

I agree that Creek is awesome. I too was surprised that it didn’t make the top 50.

Did any comics from Comics Sherpa make the cut?

#55 Daniel Boris
October/14/2009
@ 11:43 am

I second that comment about Creek… that is another VERY good comic that did not make the cut!

(Mine is Hoxwinder Hall, which also did not get placed into the top 50 in this contest. I do not have it published anywhere yet, but will be bringing it to the web ..soon enough.)

Again, congrats to the current 50!
I look forward to seeing the top 10.

Best,
Dan

#56 Jesse Cline
October/14/2009
@ 12:03 pm

Brian is like my cartooning big brother, so I was really, really sad that Creek didn’t make it. He is incredibly talented so don’t worry, this is not the last you will hear from him!

#57 Les Taylor
October/14/2009
@ 12:12 pm

Yeah I was really surprised Creek wasn’t there myself … awesome comic!

#58 Jim Lavery
October/14/2009
@ 9:34 pm

Brian, as good as “Creek” is, I thought your panel comic was HILARIOUS. You should’ve submitted that and in fact should still do so. It was “Far Side” good, but totally original.

#59 Brian Martin
October/15/2009
@ 6:28 am

Thanks for the kind words everybody…I was really saddened when I didn’t make it to the next round but I think Rene hit the nail on the head. This is a tough industry and you just need to roll with the punches. It was nice reading your posts and I really appreciate it.

To those who didn’t make it…Being turned down doesn’t always mean there is something wrong with your strip….it just didn’t happen to appeal to that certain person reviewing it at that certain time.

This was a strong list of 250 and I really would not have liked to have been part of the group to cut it down to 50….nor would I like to be part of the group cutting it down to 10.

Good luck everyone…

Jesse….as your cartoon big brother…I am entitled to give you cartoon wedgies, swirlies, and noogies? You know…big brother type stuff???

#60 Brian Martin
October/15/2009
@ 6:28 am

Thanks for the kind words everybody…I was really saddened when I didn’t make it to the next round but I think Rene hit the nail on the head. This is a tough industry and you just need to roll with the punches. It was nice reading your posts and I really appreciated it.

To those who didn’t make it…Being turned down doesn’t always mean there is something wrong with your strip….it just didn’t happen to appeal to that certain person reviewing it at that certain time.

This was a strong list of 250 and I really would not have liked to have been part of the group to cut it down to 50….nor would I like to be part of the group cutting it down to 10.

Good luck everyone…

Jesse….as your cartoon big brother…I am entitled to give you cartoon wedgies, swirlies, and noogies? You know…big brother type stuff???

#61 Jesse Cline
October/15/2009
@ 9:56 am

Brian, it also means I have to wear your old clothes and play with your broken toys. Why did you have to go and chew on all the He-Man figures?

#62 Mathew New
October/15/2009
@ 10:56 am

I didn’t make the top fifty either… Ah well, I suppose. I put my submission online if anyone fellow contest-enterers were interested in seeing another strip they were up against.

http://matcnew.deviantart.com/art/Puffin-the-Penguin-140078621

I figured out about the contest four days before it ended and I literally had nothing done besides the general premise at that point so I only ended up having time to shade half of them. Also, turns out my polar bear character is similar to a character in Sherman’s Lagoon (which I’ve never read) so that probably hurt my chances quit a bit.

Anyway, my condolences to my fellow non-fiftiers and congratulations to those that made it!

#63 Brian Martin
October/15/2009
@ 12:13 pm

Hey Jesse,
If you are worried about a few chewed up He-Man figures you really don’t want to see what I did with my Army Antz and Battle Beasts…..it isn’t pretty…

#64 Mike Cope
October/15/2009
@ 12:22 pm

@Frank Mariani: Belated thanks (and apologies)! Between the competition anticipation and an 18-month-old daughter who refuses to sleep through the night, my comment skimming skills are lagging :)

#65 Mike Cope
October/15/2009
@ 12:47 pm

Congratulations to my fellow semi-finalists! Best of luck to everyone in the next round.

To those who didn’t make the cut, I offer my kind regards and thanks for participating. I’m more than familiar with the mixed bag of feelings that come with a rejection, and so, I know that this may not come as any consolation, but one positive observation I’d like to make regarding the Comic Strip Superstar competition is that several participants have had the courage to share their “rejected” submissions online.

Most importantly, these cartoonists have requested honest feedback in order to help identify some of the weaker aspects of their submissions that they may not have been aware of before.

In my opinion, THAT is one of the most important things you can do at a time like this. Of course, take all of the feedback you receive with a grain of salt, but also take the thoughtful ones into consideration because they could very well help you in the near (or distant) future.

Two years ago, I submitted a feature to the syndicates that was form rejected, and so, I turned to fellow cartoonists for advice. I also took some time away from my submission, and then looked back at it with a critical eye. “Above the Fold” is my first submission since then, and so, I’d like to hope that I’ve learned from some of my own mistakes, but the other thing to remember is that all decisions are subjective.

In other words, if you truly enjoy doing this kinda work, don’t give up!!

I only share this now, because I don’t know how many submissions were received, but I think the pool of 250 quarterfinalists included some very talented people.

#66 Shane Davis
October/15/2009
@ 4:59 pm

I really appreciate the support shown here for those who didn’t get into the Fabulous 50. I figure there must be some sick good talent rising to the top, and that’s pretty cool.

I was bummed I didn’t make it, but I liked what Mike Cope said about the business and sticking with it. You do just have to roll with it when things don’t go your way sometimes. I figure this is one of the toughest, most competitive businesses out there, so no small effort is required to get noticed.

Besides, I’m a State Trooper. When things go bad for us in our business, that usually means getting shot.

Although it felt much like getting popped in the gut by a 12 gauge Monday morning when the new Amazon list came out sans ME, it really wasn’t the end of the world. Things could always be worse and there is always tomorrow, God willing.

And I can’t wait to see the Final 10! I’m thinking they are going to kick serious bootie!

#67 Rene Bakewell
October/15/2009
@ 7:11 pm

Brian – Have u been submitting to syndicates? I hope so.

#68 Daniel Boris
October/15/2009
@ 8:00 pm

I must say, this is the coolest collection of people I have ever seen on one message board…

Mike, your thoughts really hit home.
Shane, so did yours (the pop in the gut Monday morning comment especially)!

You can find my entry here for antoher week or so: http://expencil.blogspot.com/

Scroll down to “Hoxwinder Hall”.
All honest opinions enthusiastically accepted!

Thanks much,
Dan

#69 Daniel Boris
October/15/2009
@ 8:01 pm

I must say, this is the coolest collection of people I have ever seen on one message board…

Mike, your thoughts really hit home.
Shane, so did yours (the pop in the gut Monday morning comment especially)!

You can find my entry here for another week or so: http://expencil.blogspot.com/

Scroll down to “Hoxwinder Hall”.
All honest opinions enthusiastically accepted!

Thanks much,
Dan

#70 Daniel Boris
October/15/2009
@ 8:03 pm

Echo, Echo…
(sorry about that!)

#71 Chris A. Gruszka
October/16/2009
@ 9:12 am

Here is the link to my strip “PROBERZ” (also a casualty of the round of 250):

http://twitpic.com/lqlgs/full

#72 Julie Negron
October/16/2009
@ 11:09 am

Mike – I can’t wait to see “Above the Fold” because I really like your style. The synopsis you posted on your site makes me want to see what those tech-savvy middle-schoolers are up to. :-)

#73 Daniel Boris
October/16/2009
@ 11:13 am

Chris,

Ya gots skills, dude. Nice…

#74 Chris A. Gruszka
October/16/2009
@ 12:34 pm

Thanks Daniel! I appreciate the compliment! I had hoped to do a bit better,… but there’s life for you. It’s funny… after I made my submission, I watched those videos from the editors on the contest site, and the only thing they pooped on was “ALIEN” strips, which the guy said they’ve had a flood of. So maybe that was my problem, the subject matter. Although, having said that, I haven’t seen any “ALIEN” strips in the papers, so where are all the “ALIEN” strips? Oh well…. I am also interested in seeing what makes the top 10. Good luck to all!

#75 Daniel Boris
October/16/2009
@ 1:16 pm

Yes, I saw that also – just didn’t want to rub salt in your wound, bro. I DO like the quality of yoru strip. Very professional.

#76 Mike Cope
October/16/2009
@ 5:58 pm

Thanks, Julie — Hope you enjoy the samples when you see them!

#77 Brian Martin
October/16/2009
@ 7:38 pm

Brian â?? Have u been submitting to syndicates? I hope so.

Hey Rene…
I submitted “Creek” a few years ago to the syndicates and got a healthy handful of rejections. I have them hanging on my wall by my college diploma.

The strip has been through many changes since then and I can’t even look at those earlier strips without vomiting. I should probably double check those rejection letters and make sure there is no vomit on those….

This kinds reiterates what Mike was saying…the rejections will come…the success will come…you just have to roll with the punches and keep doing what you love.

I also have to agree with Julie…Mike, your samples are amazing. You have a serious talent there sir!

#78 Tom Wood
October/17/2009
@ 3:37 pm

Congrats to those that advanced, sympathies for those that didn’t. Every discipline worth trying is set up to reward persistance as well as talent.

Hey Shane – What is the deal with Hwy 290 at the wildflower farm outside Fredricksburg? Another bad accident there today.

#79 Shane Davis
October/17/2009
@ 9:39 pm

Tom,
Hwy 290 is just dang dangerous. I don’t work Highway Patrol out there, but from being in Austin 15 years and knowing Troopers that have, I can tell you this formula is not one for success:
Lots of beer + drivers going way to fast + too narrow highway often without center turn lanes + deer in the fall = boom bang crash oww.

I used to drive that stretch a lot and I never liked it ’cause it’s just too small for the explosive growth that’s hit Austin since the early 1990’s.

I don’t know the specific wreck you talked about today,but I know sometimes soldiers from Kileen/Ft. Hood blast through there on weekends having fun going to or from the Highland Lakes. In fact, I think one got killed there last month outside F’burg that way.

#80 Shane Davis
October/17/2009
@ 9:41 pm

That’ right folks, local news, traffic and weather for the Austin, Texas area right here on The Daily Cartoonist!

Now here’s Dan with sports….

#81 Tom Wood
October/17/2009
@ 9:54 pm

Just don’t step on the salamanders, people in Austin get twitchy about that.

#82 Shane Davis
October/17/2009
@ 10:38 pm

People in Austin are twitchy about EVERYTHING…

#83 s.m. chavez
October/19/2009
@ 4:10 pm

I set up a twitter account for Love Sick. After I get booted out of the contest I’ll be letting people know where to see the strip there. http://twitter.com/lovesickcomic/

I cannot believe how good some of the ones that did not make it into the top 50 are – Creek, PROBERZ just to name two… I have no idea what I am doing in the top 50. Best of luck to all those advancing!

#84 Chris A. Gruszka
October/22/2009
@ 6:57 pm

Thanks S.M. Look forward to seeing your strip. Here’s hoping you keep moving up!

#85 Daniel Boris
October/26/2009
@ 7:19 am

Top 10 Finalists are announced today.
I’m picking “Walking Upright” and “Stiw Kit” to advance. Good luck everyone!

#86 Les Taylor
October/26/2009
@ 7:18 pm

Has anyone heard anything? The only thing I’ve heard is that no one has heard anything…

#87 Daniel Boris
October/26/2009
@ 7:49 pm

I’ve heard that too, Les. ; )

#88 Jim Thomas
October/26/2009
@ 8:25 pm

Someone has had to of heard by now. The finalists probably aren’t allowed to say anything, especially until all the proper paperwork is turned in.

#89 Les Taylor
October/26/2009
@ 8:42 pm

I tend to agree Jim … though I will torture myself with hope until I know for sure. :D

#90 Jim Thomas
October/27/2009
@ 8:12 pm

don’t know if anyone is still checking this, but to see Doubting Thomas (throwin’ in the towel :)) you can visit

http://doubtingthomasblog.com/

#91 Jeff Cernauske
October/27/2009
@ 11:02 pm

Jim, Doubting Thomas looks great. How do you get such clean lines? Is that inked digitally?

#92 Daniel Boris
October/28/2009
@ 5:54 am

Jim,

Beautiful work! (How do you know you got cut?)

Congrats for making it this far (my submission is here if you’d like to see): http://hoxwinderhall.blogspot.com/

Best,
db

#93 Jim Thomas
October/28/2009
@ 6:23 am

@ Dan, No official word but the time came and went for cuts. Just have to assume.

@ Jeff, ‘appreciate the kind words. The strip is hand-drawn, inked with a couple different brush pens, still experimenting. Then the word balloons and type is all digital. Thinking about doing that by hand as well, but no as confident in that yet.

#94 Jim Thomas
October/28/2009
@ 6:32 am

@ Dan, also like your stuff! How far did you go? I have lost track of who ended up where

#95 Pat Sandy
October/28/2009
@ 7:02 am

Dan, Jim, etc – I also made the top 50 with “Casual Friday” (alas, not on a website, but if you’d like to see it I’ll send it to ya)…I’ve also sat here and watched the ‘deadline’ fly by, so I’m fairly certain I didn’t make it.

One thing I have to say, tho, is the level of competition was impressive – both your strips are excellent and very well executed…

I entered this ‘contest’ on a whim, but as it progressed, I really began to get pumped up – I’m sure all of you can relate – yet, I also tried to maintain some perspective, and figured I would simply try again, the old-fashioned way. The syndicate business is extremely difficult to get even the most cursory attention, but like a lot of people here, I must ‘climb the mountain’…lol!

#96 Jim Thomas
October/28/2009
@ 7:22 am

@ Pat That is the key, perspective. I haven’t ever attempted to submit to syndicates for various reasons, but this contest was just enough to get my feet wet again.

It has been interesting to see just how large the community of cartoonists that want to be in newspapers still is.

Would love to see your stuff, though. I think some people are still feeling uncomfortable, holding out for the official notice, which is understandable.

#97 Pat Sandy
October/28/2009
@ 7:24 am

Jim – yeah, I was holding out, but there’s been virtually nothing out there on the winners – there must be some kind of gag rule – yet, they’re ‘past dealine’ in effect, given that the strips should be posted on amazon by now…

Anyway, I’ll send you my stuff this eve – would love feedback…

#98 Daniel Boris
October/28/2009
@ 7:49 am

Jim & Pat,

Thanks very much. I made it to the 250. (Contests are a fickle thing. It all comes down to the a couple Editor’s subjective opinions. Everybody should let this experience inspire them to continue on, and improve and grow.)

Pat, I’d like to see your entry. You can e-mail me from my website link (which you can get to by clicking on my name here to the left of this post!)

Best,
db

#99 Pat Sandy
October/28/2009
@ 8:13 am

Jim and dan – I’ll fire my stuff off this eve…

Dan – to your point, syndication, judging, scrutinizing etc, is incredibly fickle and at best, subjective…there are plenty of strips that are currently syndicated that went through the same rigorous process as CSS…in fact, moreso, and many of those strips are languishing in only a few select papers…

On that note, money simply isn’t a motivator for many of us, myself included (altho money would ceratinly be nice…lol) – like you and many others here, it’s about creating something special we can be proud of…always stick to your vision, y’know?

#100 Daniel Boris
October/28/2009
@ 9:29 am

Pat,

Agreed!

I look forward to seeing your entry.

Thanks,
db

#101 Daniel Boris
October/28/2009
@ 12:34 pm

By The Way,

It would be great to get everybody on one Cartooning discussion board where we could all post/share our work, and learn and grow. I joined “ToonTalk” last week. It has some finalists from this contest, and good message threads in general: http://toontalk.ning.com/forum

If anybody knows of any other good forums, please post them.

Thanks,
db

#102 Julie Negron
October/28/2009
@ 1:50 pm

Here they are.

http://www.amazon.com/books-used-books-textbooks/b/?ie=UTF8&node=2128878011

#103 Alan Gardner
October/28/2009
@ 1:53 pm

I’ve posted a link to the winners (and their samples) here: http://dailycartoonist.com/index.php/2009/10/28/amazon-posts-final-10-in-comic-strip-superstar-contest/

#104 Julie Negron
October/28/2009
@ 2:08 pm

Thanks, Alan. The page my link goes to is no longer there for some reason.

#105 John Garvin
October/31/2009
@ 8:05 pm

Hi guys. Here’s a link to Peggy, which made it to the top 50.

http://www.enchantedimages.com/index.htm

You’ll also see a shameless plug for a book I publish titled “The Landon School of Illustrating and Cartooning” — a reprint of the cartoon correspondence course founded in the early 1900s which was studied by quite a few early comic strip artists: Carl Barks (Uncle Scrooge — he only studied the first few lessons), Sid Couchey (Richie Rich), Milton Caniff (Terry and the Pirates, Steve Canyon), Jack Cole (Plastic Man), Roy Crane (Wash Tubbs and Captain Easy, Buzz Sawyer), Gil Fox (DC comics), Floyd Gottfredson (Mickey Mouse), Viince Hamlin (Alley Oop), Bill Holman (creator: Smokey Stover), Jud Hurd (Cartoonist PROfiles), Bill Mauldin (Willie and Joe), and Chic Young (Blondie). Styles have moved on, but still, fascinating stuff for those of us who have followe strips for a long time.

#106 John Garvin
October/31/2009
@ 8:05 pm

Hi guys. Here’s a link to Peggy, which made it to the top 50.

http://www.enchantedimages.com/index.htm

You’ll also see a shameless plug for a book I publish titled “The Landon School of Illustrating and Cartooning” — a reprint of the cartoon correspondence course founded in the early 1900s which was studied by quite a few early comic strip artists: Carl Barks (Uncle Scrooge — he only studied the first few lessons), Sid Couchey (Richie Rich), Milton Caniff (Terry and the Pirates, Steve Canyon), Jack Cole (Plastic Man), Roy Crane (Wash Tubbs and Captain Easy, Buzz Sawyer), Gil Fox (DC comics), Floyd Gottfredson (Mickey Mouse), Viince Hamlin (Alley Oop), Bill Holman (creator: Smokey Stover), Jud Hurd (Cartoonist PROfiles), Bill Mauldin (Willie and Joe), and Chic Young (Blondie). Styles have moved on, but still, fascinating stuff for those of us who have followe strips for a long time.

#107 Frank White
August/19/2010
@ 4:30 am

Is there going to be a Comic Strip Superstar contest this year? It was this time last year when it started

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