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Titera’s Tidbit: Garfield the Cat
In the 1970s the comic strip artist Jim Davis authored a strip, Gnorm Gnat, which met with little success. One editor said that “his art was good, his gags were great,” but “nobody can identify with bugs.” Davis took his advice and created a new strip with a cat as its main character. The strip originally centered on Jon (Garfield’s owner), being rejected by the King Features, Post-Hall and the Chicago Tribune-New York News, all which asked Davis to focus on the cat, who in their opinion, got the better lines. United Feature Syndicate accepted the retooled strip in 1978 and debuted it in 41 newspapers on June 19 (however after a test run, the Chicago Sun-Times dropped it, only to reinstate it after readers’ complaints).
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