End of local Mr. Fitz comic strip

After more than two decades, a comic produced by artist DeLand will end early next year.

Mr Fitz, which tells the universe of a high school teacher, has been written and drawn since 2000 by David Finkle, who is largely inspired by his own career as a teacher for comics.

The band debuted on March 28, 2000 – in the past three years in The West Volusia Beacon after The Daytona Beach Newspaper decided to drop it.

But Finkle has decided that the strip will end next March 27 – the last day of the comic’s 22nd year.

“When I started writing Mr. Fitz, I hoped for national syndication, fame and fortune. None of that happened,” he said in posts on Twitter and Facebook announcing his decision. “Later, I hoped that I could somehow influence education policy with my satire. None of this happened.

But he finally decided it was time to end comics.

“Twenty-two is a big chunk of life: I was 33 and had been married for nine years when I started stripping, and my kids were 4 and 5. I am now 55 years old, I have been married for 30 years. , and my kids are now in their mid-20s,” her post reads. “My teaching career will be 30 years old next year.”

GROUP PHOTO — Mr. Fitz’s characters pose for a “photo” for this article. The strip is an artist’s edit of a comic by David Finkle for the 10th anniversary of the comic.

When he proposed the concept of Mr. Fitzhe shopped around for a six-week sample—unsuccessfully—to syndicators, as well as The News-Journal. After initially turning Finkle down, an editor at the Daytona Beach newspaper later asked him if he wanted Mr. Fitz to replace another tape that was ending. Mr. Fitz has graced its comic book page for over 18 years.

After being told The News-Journal was going to fall Mr. Fitz, Finkle and his wife, Andrea, were in downtown DeLand on business. Andrea suggested that David pass The tag to see if he was interested in picking up the tape.

A YEAR’S WORK – David Finkle holds up a wad of Mr. Fitz comics he completed in 2019.

“[Publisher] Barb Shepherd said “yes” in 15 minutes! says Finkel.

The tag began streaming a three-day set on its comics page the week following the comic’s final week in The News-Journal.

Now everything is over. Finkle said the four- to six-week story arc leading up to the finale has been written, and there will be almost eight months of weekly sets of tapes to produce in the meantime.

“I still have a lot to say through Mr. Fitz in the next few months!” he said in his Facebook post.

And he plans to continue posting “flashback” tapes on his website, mrfitz.com, to continue blogging and to continue being a well-done voice for public education. He also has other writing and drawing projects he wants to work on after the weekly deadlines are up.

Through it all, a feeling sustains him.

“One thing I’m proud of is that the small community of people who read Mr. Fitz have almost always been positive,” his Facebook post reads. “I am happy if I have brought some happiness into your lives.”