We recently sat down with MS in Publishing student, Cory Jarvis, who runs a popular webcomic.
Tell us about yourself.
I was born and raised in southern California, then left to serve in the Air Force. I returned to go to University of California Santa Barbara to get a bachelor’s in history. What do you do with a history degree?
You guessed it: Move to a small tropical island in the Pacific to do a six-month stint “working” at an all-inclusive resort, and then take a job in Japan with Disney’s World of English doing shows for children, and creating and managing a national family camp.
When I moved to New York City, while pursuing stand-up at night, I was a manager at one of New York’s largest private English as a Second Language schools. Stand-up got busier, so I quit my day job, and then a baby came along. Now I’m happily back in school with hopes to work steadily in the publishing industry for years to come.
What made you decide to get your Masters in Publishing at Pace?
I have been doing stand-up comedy for a while now, and it was going well enough for a single guy, but then I got married and had kids, so now I need to buy diapers.
I’m a lifelong reader, and so when I decided to get a regular job again, I wanted something that I would look forward to doing every day. Surrounding myself with books, and my fellow book lovers sounded like a no-brainer.
What have been some of your favorite classes so far?
I’ve enjoyed all my classes so far, but if I had to pick one, the very first class I took in the program was Children’s Publishing taught by Professor Maria Barbo, and through that class, I learned so much not just about the industry, but also about kid’s books. I was, and still am reading them every day so sometimes my son gets impatient with me while Daddy tries to identify what print run his board book is on.
I also have taken a couple classes related to comics and graphic novels which I really liked. I have been studying story writing for some time now (even doing a yearlong fellowship at the Hollywood Screen Writers Guild), and I write comics, so it is an area in publishing I would like to go into.
Tell us about the inspiration behind your webcomic.
First and foremost it is a creative outlet, which I need, but it also has a practical purpose.
It is really hard to get people to care about what you are doing unless you build up a base of people who love your work. That takes time, effort, and consistency. And so I had a website created that would give people who like my writing something new and hopefully entertaining/thoughtful to read every Thursday.
(Check out Cory’s webcomic here!)
Is there anything else you’ve been working on?
I’m proud of my accomplishments in stand-up comedy. I headlined Caroline’s Comedy Club on Broadway, did a set on national television, and my debut comedy album Crooked Bowtie went to number one on iTunes as well as being chosen as album of the month by Sirius satellite radio. However, every time I did one of the aforementioned things I needed to get people to show up, and that was sometimes harder than doing the event itself.
I’m also writing a graphic novel, and have finished a sample chapter and outline. I plan on pitching it sometime in the future, so I am hoping to build up a group of people who would be excited to see that come to life.