Showing posts with label cartoons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cartoons. Show all posts

05 February 2024

The Fine Art of Collaboration


For some writers, collaboration is a fact of life; for others, it's a rare gift. I’m in the second category. I’m awestruck at the harmonious working relationship of writing duos who turn out seamless works, whether they’re bestselling series like the historical mysteries of Charles Todd and his mother Caroline (the other half of author Charles Todd until her death in 2021) or one-offs like the Edgar-nominated short story "Blind-Sided" (2021) by SleuthSayer Michael Bracken and James A. Hearn.

I've participated in a number of musical collaborations, starting in high school, when a friend and I achieved fame for presenting our parody of Hamlet to the tune of folksong "Putting on the Style," with guitars, in numerous English classes. For years afterwards, when I met someone who'd attended my very large high school, they'd say, "Ohh, you're the one who wrote "Hamlet!"

In the noughties, as Brits call the first decade of the present century, I took part in several songwriting workshops led by legendary singer-songwriter Jimmie Dale Gilmore, whose work defies classification, though he's received a couple of Grammy nominations in the contemporary folk category. Jimmie and the other members of his original band, the Flatlanders, hail from Lubbock, Texas, along with Buddy Holly and Natalie Maines of the Dixie Chicks. In a long career, he's learned a lot about creative collaboration. In his workshops, he makes songwriters work in groups. He believes the creative group process mirrors the process in the individual writer's head. As he put it, the dialogue in one case and the monologue in the other both go, "That's brilliant! No, that's stupid!" In my case, since I didn't get to pick the people, the group process ended in tears a few times. But I think he's right about how the process works.

Between 2010 and 2012, I had the great joy of collaborating with my friend Ray Korona on an album of songs that I'd written over the course of half a century. It's called Outrageous Older Woman. I produced the album, Ray co-produced and acted as sound engineer, and we collected a tremendously gifted array of backup singers and musicians to create an album of my music that sounded the way I'd heard it only in my wildest dreams. We spent many, many hours in Ray's basement recording studio in New Jersey, and every hour was a happy one. Ten years after Ray's untimely death from cancer, I still cherish a moment when we got exactly the sound we wanted for a solo passage from a fingerstyle guitarist (think Chet Atkins or Ricky Skaggs) after auditioning four different musicians for the descriptor "a git-tar picker who had lightning in his hands" in a song about a country music band. Ray and I exchanged a look of delight and perfect satisfaction that still warms my heart when I remember it. There's nothing like that "Got it!" moment in a good collaboration.

I've never collaborated on a pure writing project, as opposed to lyrics. Like the late Parnell Hall, I would have sold out and said yes to big bestseller Stuart Woods, if I’d gotten the call, or to James Patterson, like everyone else. Bestsellers aside, I’d do my best if invited to collaborate with a writer I respect and trust on a publishable project. But no one’s ever asked. I've had a handful of brilliant editors and quite a few bad ones, and I tend to trust my own judgment over that of most other writers. I hate writing by committee, and while I may dream occasionally of the perfect writing partner, I'm unlikely to encounter one.

My most recent collaboration was with fellow SleuthSayer and multi-talented writer, graphic artist, tech wiz, etc, my friend Leigh Lundin. After reading my post on my adventures checking out my DNA, Leigh had the bright idea of creating a cartoon that riffed on them. He thought it up and did all the work. I got to critique both the artwork ("My complexion isn't green." "Can you make the angry woman thinner?") and the text ("It's funnier if you mention the DNA." "No hyphen in storyteller.") as Leigh patiently produced one version after another. We were both busy with other projects, so it took more than a year, but we finally achieved our "Got it!" moment. Here's the result:

30 September 2023

Crime Scene Comix Case 2023-09-022, Statue


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Yikes! In this Crime Time episode, only one outcome is possible.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

27 July 2023

Crime Scene Comix Case 2023-07-022, Parking


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Yikes! In this Crime Time episode, Shifty channels Cool Hand Luke.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

17 April 2023

Crime Scene Comix Case 2023-04-021, Bearly There


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Yikes! In this episode, Shifty learns the importance of a mother’s love… bearly.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

08 January 2023

Crime Scene Comix Case 2023-01-020, Red Bull


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Yikes! In this episode, Shifty goes to the dogs.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

07 January 2023

Crime Scene Comix Case 2023-01-019, Red Card


Leigh here with a sexist rant: I like watching US women’s soccer. Why? The players are exuberant and serious. When a men’s player (pick a country, any country) stubs a toe over an imaginary slight, he tearfully collapses on the ground, grousing and groaning like a sobbing 3-year-old whilst pointing a quaking finger at his opponent, hoping for a red card. Ooo, boo hoo. When one of the women is knocked down, she gets up and goes back to work. Hey, don’t trash me for telling it like I see it.

This isn’t one of Shifty’s best, but FIFA football fans will watch anything soccer related. Let’s have a look.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

26 September 2022

Crime Scene Comix Case 2022-09-018, Sunken Treasure


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoon lab, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Yikes! In this episode, Shifty almost becomes legitimately rich… if we overlook that part about a stolen boat.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

12 July 2022

Crime Scene Comix Case 2022-07-017, Monkeying Around


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Yikes! In this episode, Shifty meets his primate ancestors.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

13 June 2022

Crime Scene Comix Case 2022-06-016, Wishing Pond


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Uh-oh. In this episode, Shifty takes a soaking.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

26 May 2022

Crime Scene Comix Case 2022-05-015, Cleanup


Let’s watch another cartoon from the Future Thought channel of YouTube. Check them out.

In this episode, Shifty, a none-too-bright crook who looks like a Minion in zebra stripes, gets taken to the cleaners and you can bank on it.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit the Future Thought channel on YouTube.

18 April 2022

Crime Scene Comix Case 2022-04-013, Up and Away


Let’s enjoy another cartoon from the Future Thought channel of YouTube. Check them out.

In this episode, Shifty, a none-too-bright crook who looks like a Minion in zebra stripes, takes flight… and fright. Poor Shifty meets the truly cold-blooded.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit the Future Thought channel on YouTube.

14 April 2022

Crime Scene Comix Case 2022-04-014, Getaway


We haven’t watched Shifty in a couple of years, that comical crook from the Future Thought channel of YouTube, Here comes a new one– new to us.

You remember Shifty, a none-too-bright crook who looks like a Minion in zebra stripes. He almost always loses, but this time he does it right… or wrong, depending how you look at it.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought channel on YouTube.

15 January 2021

Crime Scene Comix Case 2021-01-012, Shock Therapy


A new year, and perhaps the world is righting itself. Let’s try a chuckle from Future Thought channel of YouTube. Check it out.

Once again, we visit Shifty, a none-too-bright crook who looks like a Minion in zebra stripes. This time poor Shifty finds himself on the hot seat.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit the Future Thought channel on YouTube.

04 December 2020

Crime Scene Comix Case 2020-11-011, Paint Job


After rummaging through the dust bin of the Future Thought channel of YouTube, I found this little gem. Check it out.

Reintroducing Shifty, a none-too-bright crook who looks like a Minion in zebra stripes. This time poor Shifty finds himself doubly humiliated. The poor felon can’t win.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought channel on YouTube.

08 August 2020

Crime Scene Comix Case 2020-08-010, Invisibility


Shifty, sly miscreant as he is, has a clear conscience… of sorts. Let’s visit Shift on the job.

We show another clip from our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. Check it out.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

06 March 2020

Crime Scene Comix Case 2020-03-009, Underground Comics


Our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube, doesn't disappoint. We love their sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Our non-too-bright criminal breaks out of prison. It's Groundhog Day of a different sort.

𝄞 ♪♫ Not much wood a woodchuck chucks… ♬♩𝄇

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s Crime Time cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

14 February 2020

Crime Scene Comix Case 2020-02-008, Not-so-Healthful Spa


Once again we highlight our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Did I say sausage shaped? Without clothes, our little villain doesn't have much shape at all. On the run, our none-too-bright criminal drops into a health spa. Uh-oh. What could go wrong?

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

03 February 2020

Crime Scene Comix Case 2020-01-007, Shifty Railroaded


Thus far this year, we haven’t visited our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube. We love the sausage-shaped Shifty, a Minion gone bad.

Not merely sausage-like, this villain is a shape-shifter of sorts. Our non-too-bright criminal robs a bank. He conceives of an ingenious escape plan. Brilliant, except for the unforeseen…

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

01 November 2019

Crime Scene Comix Case 2019-11-006, Shifty in Love


We welcome our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube, back to SleuthSayers. They produce more than one animated comic, but our favorite is Shifty.
It was bound to happen– Shifty falls in love. Naturally when our boy courts a girl, courting means something entirely different. Don’t pierce thine heart on the prick of roses.

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.

12 October 2019

Crime Scene Comix Case 2019-10-005, Meep-Meep


We welcome our criminally favorite cartoonist, Future Thought channel of YouTube, back to SleuthSayers. They produce more than one animated comic, but our favorite is Shifty.
Usually Shifty, our none-too-bright crook, the one who looks like a Minion in prison stripes, finds himself hoisted on his own pétard. Once in a rare while he manages to escape the law. Here our acme of antics channels the Roadrunner. meep-meep

 
   
  © www.FutureThought.tv

 

That’s today’s crime cinema. Hope you enjoyed the show. Be sure to visit Future Thought YouTube channel.