January 26, 1999
Post #799 – 19990126
Dear Twisted Genius and Ace Dog Man:
Your books are great fun, especially to those of us who must be forced to admit being grownups. I no longer remember how I first discovered you, but I introduced you to my wife by reading _Lizard Music_ aloud. A few years later, as a Christmas present while she was away at school, I gave her tapes of me reading _The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death_. It was one of her favorites ever. So suffice it to say we are a Pinkwater family.
What I am really writing about, however, is Norb. I *loved* Norb. In his defense, I wrote letters to the editor of the Trenton Times. One was even published. But it was not enough. Then, five years later, at a science-fiction convention, I was lucky enough to find the cheesy MU Press edition of the dailies, which I cherish even though the damn pages are falling out. Then, ten years later, just the other day, as I was wandering about the city hoping for a glimpse of the Chicken Man, it hit me. Larson has retired. Watterson is in seclusion. *Now* is the time for a revival of Norb. He was never more needed than today—the comics page is a wasteland of normality. The only strip with pretensions to the unusual is unfunny and badly drawn.
What would it take to lure you and Auth back into the fray?
I’m sure no sensible person in your position would get involved with the newspaper syndicates again. But what about Internet distribution? At one time, people were quite interested in distributing comics via electronic mail, by subscription. I may still know such people. Can you imagine a scenario by which Norb might be brought back?
P.S. I’m envious that you got to meet Captain Haggerty. I loved his book with Carol Lea Benjamin.
Tony Auth and I miss Norb more than you do. I would go back to working on that project in a minute. Auth, you'd have to ask yourself. You can write to him at the Philadelphia Inquirer. If he wants to do it, chances are excellent that I want to do it.