The doughy humans and brainy wildlife of Gary Larson's "The Far Side" cartoons made people bend over with laughter for more than a decade. At its peak, "The Far Side" ran in 1,900 newspapers and in 17 languages. It was voted the No. 1 cartoon in United States newspapers for 10 years in a row.
But after 14 years of daily deadlines, and eager to avoid (as he put it) "the graveyard of mediocre cartoons," Mr. Larson put down his pen in 1995.
Since his retirement, Larson, who rarely speaks to the media, has done two animation projects and written a book called "There's a Hair in My Dirt: A Worm's Story" (HarperCollins, 1998).
He is currently working on a two-volume, 1,200-to-1,300 page anthology, which will include works from his personal scrapbook and more than 1,100 cartoons of his that were never published. This is the last year of his desktop calendar, the best-selling calendar on the market for the past 16 years.
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