A glimpse into the cartoonist's inbox

Cartoonists often get asked to do bizarre things for no money. Thanks to the marvel that is the internet, these requests now come thick and fast by email. Here's one I got the other day: "Hi there, any chance you could do me a picture of Plug from The Beano? Can't find one on the net ..." I politely replied that the sender had perhaps not looked hard enough. I found that a Google image search turns up several pics of Plug:

Another common type of email is the type that potentially offers work to the cartoonist while giving away as little information as possible about the potential project. These are genuine and unedited, only the names have been cut:

"am looking for a catoonist for my book. think we can find out if you fit? Regards …"

"Hello, Could you please contact me regarding our need for an illustration/cartoon characters. Thank you …"

"i found your name looking for an illustrator for a childrens book I have written can you tell me what sort of costings it would be for around 10 picturesor how you work out you costings. thanks looking forward to hearing from you"

I'll cover the people that demand all the secrets to becoming a top cartoonist (like I'd know!), usually in an email dashed off in 30 seconds, some other time ...