Greg Curfman, Creator of Meg!

29 June 2001

    Are you are a fan of "Calvin and Hobbes"? Is Susie, Calvin's schoolmate and target of his pranks, one of your favourite cartoon characters? If you are, take a look at the new comic strip Meg!. It rounds out the funny pages with the perspective of a spunky, strong-willed girl.

   The Meg! comic strip is constructed around a modern youngster, named Meg of course. She is interested in sports and has presidential aspirations to boot. Meg loves soccer and thrills at competition. She has a younger brother named Mike, who is more interested in science and "risk management." Meg takes every chance she can get to bug him.

   Meg's softer side shows up when her dog Van Gogh appears in the strip. He has had a rough life; he has a glass eye, is missing one ear and was rescued after being run over by a French pastry cart. Meg's parents, (an efficient Mom and a slightly goofy Dad) and her friend Ashley fill out the regulars in the cast.

    Greg Curfman, the creator of Meg!, is the father of four children. He has used the strong personality of his first daughter as inspiration and added his son's love of sports to form Meg's character. Having children gave Greg "the kind of experience that can't be made up; the kind that HAS to be lived. Now he had something to write about."
(From Ucomics.com).

    Greg was born in 1957 in Newport News, Virginia. He graduated from Warwick High School in 1974. Later, he earned a B.S. in Marketing from Christopher Newport University. In 1980, he earned a Masters degree in Applied Science - Computers, from William and Mary University in Williamsburg, Virginia.

meg

   Like many others, Greg wished to be a cartoonist since he was a young child. He spent his time reading comics pages, comics histories and old collections. He began drawing cartoons in high school. Syndicates rejected his submissions, so Curfman took the leap into syndication for himself.

   "Figleaves" was Greg's first attempt at comic syndication, while still in the middle of his college education. He gave up his foray into the cartoon business after a respectable three years from lack of income. He completed his degrees and landed a position at IBM, writing computer software. He continued using his artistic talents to create family Christmas cards and items for friends, but the yearning to be a cartoonist drew him to attempt syndication again.

    Greg wrestled with several cartoon ideas for a few years. The struggle produced Meg! in 1995. Curfman was accepted by United Features Syndicate and the strip began running in newspapers in March of 1997. Anne Grimes of United Features Syndicate said of the cartoon, "It's a cute and funny strip and a lot of people can relate to soccer; that was a big draw." Greg admitted that the hardest part of cartooning is continually thinking up new ideas. He said he has learned that ideas eventually will always come to him. No doubt having four kids would provide an abundance of incentive.

    Greg Curfman and his wife Diane, also from Newport News, make their home in Raleigh, North Carolina with their children Katie, Steven, Chris and Jason. The Curfman family are busy with sports: Greg coaches Katie's soccer team, Diane drives Steven to his travelling sports games and the youngest practice sports in the family room at home.

Give Meg! a try at: http://www.unitedmedia.com/comics/meg/
An alumni article about Greg Curfman from Spring 2000:
http://www.cnu.edu/alumni/springmag/spring7.html
© Susanna McLeod 2001
TheCartoonists.ca  
(Originally published in The Cartoonists on suite101.com.)