Train cartoon: Inspiration in a captive environment

"Hell is other people." So said Jean Paul Sartre. And he never had to travel on the Southeastern Trains service from London Victoria to Ramsgate.

The journeys can be pretty horrendous, especially when populated by the kind of people that don't give a stuff about anyone else. Still, at the least I got a cartoon out of this particular journey, one that appears in the current edition of The Spectator.

I travel on the train between Broadstairs and London fairly regularly and often come up with ideas for gag cartoons while doing so. I sold two to Reader's Digest recently which were both thought up on train journeys and jotted down in my notebook, though unlike this one they were not about train journeys. I think it's a good place to think up ideas because you're in a captive environment, with fewer distractions. You can't just go and make some toast or surf the internet. Of course, its easier on the quieter trips.

So, if you see me scribbling away on the Ramsgate to London service, please keep it down will you? And haven't you got any headphones for that thing?

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