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Posted at 11:30 AM ET, 03/31/2009

'Candorville' Cartoonist Finds His [Short-Form] Muse

By Michael Cavna

Today, "Candorville" creator DARRIN BELL begins a near-weeklong vampiric adventure that delves into the social wonders -- and woes -- of Twitter.

So judging by his obvious familiarity with Twitter, does this mean Bell himself has decided to take the micro-blogging plunge?

"I signed up for a Twitter account a year or two ago, but just barely started using it regularly," says Bell by e-mail because -- trust us -- it takes too long to do interviews in 140-character chunks at a time. "For some reason, Twitter has become a muse."

He explains: "I can't tell you how many tweets I've posted and then immediately deleted because I realized they'd make good cartoons."

Bell isn't the first cartoonist 'Riffs has spoken with who finds inspiration in Twitter (seems a daily source of our conversation with fellow cartoonists, actually), but the eloquent artist describes the attraction aptly.

"When cartoonists blog, it's because it gives us a chance to keep our long-form writing muscle from atrophying," he tells 'Riffs. "When we go on Facebook, it's to connect with the people who ignored us in high school. But Twitter? We cartoonists already spend most of our time creating brief tweet-like musings about our day: only instead of 'tweets,' we call them 'cartoons.'

Here at Comic Riffs, we'll continue reading Bell's strip AND his tweets, to try to trace the creative linkage. (And for 'Riffs Cartoon Updates, check out


This is one of more of the entertaining animated bits I've seen in recent days: "Twouble With Twitters," from Current TV. Here 'tis--today's "staff pick" for recommending viewing:

By Michael Cavna  | March 31, 2009; 11:30 AM ET
Categories:  General  
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Next: The Twitter Interview: 'PvP' Creator Scott Kurtz


I've been sending that video around for a week or two now. LOVE it.

You have to watch for the tweets (? twits? I don't know, I don't Twitter) flying around the Twittersphere...

Posted by: Chasmosaur1 | March 31, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

Some of the local news faces have started with Myspace and/or Twitter. It seems to take too much time -I post comments regularly to email friends and a few sites ( is one)

Posted by: vldazzle | March 31, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

I am a huge fan of Darrin Bell's Candorville and I have also just started using Twitter. In fact, today's strip of my webcomic "Addanac City" ( deals with the use of Twitter while in the workplace.

Posted by: GeorgeFord | April 2, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

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