Big Nate Accomplishes Big Record

The "Big Nate" bus sitting in the Barnes & Noble Parking Lot in Hurst, TX

The “Big Nate” bus sitting in the Barnes & Noble Parking Lot in Hurst, TX

The Longest Strip

If you were watching NBC “The Today Show” last week, you found out that the comic strip, “Big Nate” was a part of a Guiness World Record ┬ábreaking event, setting a record for the longest comic strip at 3,920 feet.

Congrats to Lincoln Peirce, the creator of “Big Nate,” the school children who contributed to this epic work as well as the people of Harper Collins.

I’ve followed Mr. Peirce’s work for some time now and have discovered more and more amazing things about him and his work as a cartoonist and author. Mr. Peirce created “Big Nate” nearly 20 years ago and now has become an incredible hit, BUT, there’s a deeper lesson to be learned here…the lesson of “staying power,” and discipline, determination and dedication.

That’s unheard of in the world we live in today.

If it doesn’t work out in a week we are done with it…and it stinks that we are like that sometimes!

This also is convicting to me both as a writer and a cartoonist and minister!

For A Cause

What I love about this huge endeavor is that it was more than just a big fat publicity stunt. Harper Collins is going to donate $10,000 worth of books to a non-profit geared towards promoting educational material and books to those less fortunate and underprivileged.

Once again, this is prove that cartoons can be for more than just laughs. They can change and impact lives forever! Cartoons have done that for me during times of being bullied and teased and they do it for somebody out there that’s feeling misunderstood, disconnected, alone or scared. Think of the kind of affect that cartoons, comics, art and illustration have on us all.

I’m grateful to have met Mr. Peirce in person and am grateful for every good and awesome cartoonist and artist looking to help move youth and adults forward in life!

It should encourage anyone, be it an author, minister, blogger, teacher or cartoonist (amateur or otherwise) to push to do it “BIG!”

Are You A Dreamer or Unrealistic

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Are you a dreamer? Or, are you unrealistic?

I suppose it is easy to determine the two, right? The truth is, it’s hard depending on where your mind and heart is.

You can dream of being an incredible creative and writer all day long but the reality of a day job and other responsibilities hit you in the face day after day!

So, what do you do? Do you wallow in self-pity and give up? I don’t think so! I think that will only make matters much, MUCH worse.

I’m learning that in order for my day-job to later transition into a dream-job…writing and creative work like cartoons and blogging…I have to take realistic steps and at the same time I have to have a reasonable dream.

I’m not dreaming these days of being a nuclear scientist like I did when I was age 8…but I can still nurture the interest I have in the subject in other ways. I’m not going to dream of being a Football player because it’s neither my calling…and frankly…I’m not in shape for it. Plus, I could care less for the sport (or most sports outside of Hockey, Skateboarding and Baseball anyway).

And yeah, I did have a dream of being a TV meteorologist, but the more I got into it and the longer I volunteered in the weather center, the older the experience got. Plus, my math stinks and I wasn’t about to go through that especially since I narrowly escaped the clutches of mathematical nonsense in high school. But, my dreams have simply changed mediums and the passion is transferred into my latest book project(s).

Unrealistic, to me, is to have a dream with no plan, no idea and no depth of how serious and how much work it will take. Unrealistic, to me, is the idea that your name will be in lights and that it will only take one step to make you world renowned. It’s like being the guy who writes that one book and expects to be a New York Times Bestseller by the end of the month. Chances are, it’s not going to happen…and you know what…that’s okay! It doesn’t have to!

Unrealistic views and expectations tend to set us up for failure. It makes us ask of ourselves what we can’t possibly expect or hope to achieve. That doesn’t mean we can’t do awesome and incredible things in our fields or professions…it just means that we have to be reasonable here about how much, how far, how deep and how long we can go.

To dream and be realistic means getting up at 5AM in the morning to do a little blogging or writing and then leaving for work not but an hour or two later. To dream and be realistic means going to school or getting more education even after sitting in a mind-numbing cubicle somewhere. To dream and be realistic means staying up a little later than usual just so you can get that extra comic strip done, that extra chapter written or that blog post posted!

Realistically, it is our “reasonable” service!