I’ve been talking about this pretty openly online. I’ve held off making any sort of formal announcement until I did some thinking and until I told a few people privately first. I didn’t want my father, for instance to learn about this because my aunt read it to him off her Facebook feed. He’d only imagine the worst and I needed to see him face-to-face in order to best explain things to him so he’d understand. I think most people in my Inner Circle know by now and if I haven’t told you personally, I apologize. I might follow up this post with a couple of more private messages. I’ll also be linking to this from my Facebook page later. After all, I may as well try to milk this for a little extra traffic to the ol’ website.
A couple of weeks ago… January 2016 as of this writing, … I delivered my FINAL story for Archie Comics. The story is one I wrote and drew entitled “Happiness Is A Clean Puppy.” It will be featured in Archie Digest #269, pictured above, and, I believe, on sale this May. Buy it! Let me go out with big sales! That’ll show ’em!
I had no idea this was going to be my last story until I handed it in to the production manager at Archie Comics. He told me he wasn’t going to be having any more work for me for “the foreseeable future.” The reason was an “inventory backlog.” I have my own thoughts on this reasoning which I may go into in another post. I don’t question the production manager. He’s a good guy who does the best with the circumstances he’s given. I don’t question his reasons. I do however question the reasons he’s given. I spoke to Victor Gorelick, Archie Comic’s co-president and the man who had brought me in twenty-two years earlier. He was shocked to learn that I wasn’t going to be given anymore work. He had no idea.
I didn’t talk to anyone else and no one else spoke to me so I went home. That’s how I ended my twenty-two year run at Archie Comics.
This may sound sad, but in all honesty Archie couldn’t have ended at a better time for me. My partner and friend, Dan Parent… the LAST Classic Archie guy left standing at Archie… are in the thick of producing our Die Kitty Die book. My very good friend Gisele Lagace is lining up lots of work for me at Pixie Trix Comix and next month, convention season starts up again. I have lots of commissions on my table to get through as well! It’s a busy time and I’m still out here drawing.
If the truth were told, I should REALLY have walked away from Archie a lot sooner. The writing had been written on the wall in big flaming red ceiling-to-floor letters for a long, long time now, but sucker that I am, I always insist on being the guy who stays to turn off the lights after everyone else has left. I’m always hoping things will get better!
Well, things have!
Thanks to everyone who has been very kind and supportive and has come through with very nice things to say. I firmly believe this is a change for the better but it’s never any fun not walking away on your own terms… especially after twenty-two years. Its times like this that you appreciate all the people in your corner. It’s their kind words that see you through times like this. Some people have reached out already and I appreciate their good thoughts. I’ll still be drawing and I’ll still be posting right here. Please leave a comment below. I’ll happily answer any questions as best as I can.
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