Episode 271: Adrian Tomine


“The rewards of being a successful cartoonist would not be enough to make for a happy life,” says Adrian Tomine. It’s something that’s changed as he’s grown older, gotten married, had kids. He adds that he’s grateful for the readers and the recognition — that plenty of people still read everything he does. But priorities change. as we get older. Where critical acclaim for a new work would have been more than enough to keep him going, the Brooklyn-based artists is more focused these days on his wife and two daughters — factors that have impacted both the way he works and what he produces. The short stories in his latest, Killing and Dying (now out in paperback), while not connected in term of subject matter, all contain elements of a creator steeped in parenting. And while being home during the day to care for two young kids hasn’t made him the most productive he’s been in his career, it’s compelled him to take risks, like optioning a comic to filmmakers for the first time in his long career. In this wide ranging and honest conversation, we discuss the pitfalls of perfection, the influence of growing up in Northern California and inhabiting the shoes of a broad ranging cast of characters.

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