My First Reubens Weekend

Jen Sorensen and Isabella Bannerman at Reubens 2011

I recently joined the National Cartoonists Society and went to my first Reubens Award weekend, the annual gathering of professional doodlers from North America and points beyond. This year the event was in Boston at the Fairmont Copley Plaza, a hotel so fancy it makes the Vatican look like a Dollar Tree. That’s me above with my friend Isabella Bannerman, one of the “Six Chix.” Note the great expression on the gentleman behind us.

I don’t even know where to begin recounting the weekend — I had so many fun conversations with friends old and new — but I can tell you that every now and then, something truly surreal would happen, such as finding Cathy Guisewite behind me in line in the ladies’ room. (This now rivals my other Ladies’ Room Brush With Fame with Dennis Kucinich’s wife, who towered above her stall like a very beautiful giraffe.) I got to briefly meet Sergio Aragones and Garry Trudeau. One evening, I found myself eating dinner with the entire Marmaduke clan. I was heartened to hear that one of the Sons of Marmaduke reads my strip regularly in the Village Voice. On the other hand, I fear I committed a grave faux pas by referring to the matriarch of the Marmaduke Dynasty as Mrs. Marmaduke. She seemed perplexed, so I hastily explained that I often referred to my husband as Mr. Slowpoke. (I would say “Ruh-Roh!” here, but that’s Scooby Doo. Speaking of which, I wonder if there’s a blood feud between the House of Marmaduke and the House of Scooby.) Anyway, good times!


Jen Sorensen is a cartoonist for Daily Kos, The Nation, In These Times, Politico and other publications throughout the US. She received the 2023 Berryman Award for Editorial Cartooning from the National Press Foundation, and is a recipient of the 2014 Herblock Prize and a 2013 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. She is also a Pulitzer Finalist.



Join the Sorensen Subscription Service! Powered by Campaignzee

Or subscribe via Patreon: