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Mike du Jour Makes Old Hometown Daily

Mike Lester grew up in Atlanta, even got his first newspaper job there.
While he has since moved away his Mike du Jour comic strip will now become a daily fixture there.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has picked up the comic.

The comic’s creator, Mike Lester, was born and raised in Atlanta. He graduated from the University of Georgia. He once worked for The Atlanta Journal. And, yes, appearing in the pages of his hometown newspaper is special.

“I’m in a lot of newspapers,” Lester told me last week, “but I’m most proud to be in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.”

The Journal-Constitution introductory piece has background on Lester

As Lester tells the story, he spent two weeks working at a TGI Fridays on Roswell Road, where he earned the title: Worst. Waiter. Ever. Luckily for him, he received a call from the editor of The Atlanta Journal, who was intrigued by his design background and invited him for an interview.

and on Mike du Jour

Years later, Lester left for an advertising gig. But the allure of working again in a newsroom kept calling. Fortunately, for Lester, so, too, did The Wall Street Journal, which asked Lester to draw a cartoon for its readers.

With that, “Mike du Jour” was born.

“It quickly became something that nobody else was doing,” Lester said of his cartoon. “I wanted to do something that you’re not used to seeing.”

There was only one small problem: The Journal wanted Lester’s cartoon to appear three days a week. Given the title, Lester insisted that it publish at least five times a week.

Thanks to Lester’s shrewd negotiating abilities, The Journal relented. Lester could draw the cartoon five days a week, if he wanted. He would be paid for three.

And so it went, from 1995 until 1998, when The Journal and “Mike du Jour” parted ways.

A short time later, The Washington Post agreed to help Lester syndicate the column in newspapers around the country.

Luckily for Atlantans the paper picked up the strip in time for opening day.
Mike is a baseball fan and may have some week long story arcs centered on the national pastime.



Community Comments

#1 Lester
@ 10:42 am

Thank you.

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