I haven't always been a successful cartoonist. Believe it or not, 35 years ago in the summer of 1982, I was anything but. They say success is built on skill, ability, talent or hard work. And maybe it is, but in my experience, there's also 'luck'.
Between autumn 1980 and spring 1982 I had managed to finally get a few jobs drawing comics. But I was losing more jobs than I was gaining. With a friend (I thought she was a friend but turned out she wasn't) I had begun to look for other illustration jobs. We eventually got some work with a TV station, and one or two other bits of commissions. I had nearly given up on being a comics cartoonist, I was starting to feel left behind. But we set out on a hot day in July 1982 to a final big push around publishers in London. We had our portfolio cases with us and struck out with the Writers and Artists Yearbook to visit all the publishers who would see us.
Well I won't bore you with the sad tale of our reception at these places. We ended up at 2 O'clock in the afternoon in a tatty, deserted pub in Chalk Farm downing two pints of lager. It was a very dispiriting afternoon. We were just wondering whether we ought to try some more publishers or get the train home when the door burst open, and what I vividly recall as a whirlwind of colour and cheerful shouting charged in. On closer inspection, it was five young women with instrument cases, gloriously mad hair and bright outfits.