Roughs, Volume 139

Kids, we took last week off from the CNN Opinion Newsletter which is why you didn’t get one in your email last Sunday. You are a subscriber, right? If you want to help me keep a job, you are. Anyway, I still have some roughs for you. Most of these are from the Maybe folder you’ve read about here.

The Maybe folder is where I stick roughs that I know I’ll do later or I’m undecided about. Most never become full-fledged official cartoons and I eventually have to clean them out. I’m cleaning a bunch out today. I usually like the idea in the Maybe folder very much and the only reason I don’t make them into actual cartoons is that the issue gets away from me. They become less relevant.

I could have kept this one in the folder for later, but I’m tired of looking at it. Rich, my editor at CNN, thought it was hilarious but it wasn’t our main issue that week. I showed it to one of my copy editors who also found it hysterical. I had intended to draw it the next day, and then something else happened, and something else happened the day after that. Things kept happening to the point that it’s been at least three months since I’ve drawn it. “Gay dwarf Hell” is still funny though.

This was drawn last week for my clients and it wasn’t meant to be a rough. I have a hard time drawing dead bodies. Not because of the gruesomeness of it, even when it’s children, but for the composition. After lettering this, I decided to start over. The bodies were fine. I didn’t like the building.

This was drawn several months ago when Donald Trump literally told Republicans not to vote unless he was reinstated. I did another cartoon on it that I can’t remember now. Since I hate to do the same issue two days in a row, I intended to hold onto this for a day or two. Now, months later, I decided it can be pulled from the Maybe folder.

I saw a story about stupid asshole cops refusing to be vaccinated against COVID. This might have been drawn last year. Once again, the story faded into the background before I could draw it.

Another that was too close to something I already did. I drew both roughs at the same time and chose this one. In fact, the other one may have gone to CNN. I probably held onto this for a few days so I wouldn’t scoop them, and myself with a similar cartoon. And then while trying to decide if it was too close to the other cartoon, the issue got away from me again. I really liked the art in this one and planned to just touch it up, add shading and color, and re-letter it over redrawing the entire thing again as I usually do.

I drew another cartoon that looked similar to this, though the idea was different. In that one, Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito was screaming at women for protesting without his permission. I liked this idea but the image was too much like the one I published. I still considered it so it landed in the Maybe folder. Its time too has passed.

I was going to do this one a few weeks ago, when the abortion ruling leaked (yes, the trial had been going on that long), and then decided to wait until there was a verdict. But I didn’t like that it kinda both-sides it on the issue. So after drawing the cartoon I published last Thursday that made half my readers scream at me, I decided this rough’s time has passed. Plus, I didn’t think this cartoon was that good.

The only thing that stopped this one is that I did a “touch your hair” joke a few months ago. I still considered this so it landed in the Maybe folder. The other “touch your hair” cartoon had also been a months-long resident of the Maybe folder. 

This one isn’t a rough. It’s a cartoon in progress. This is from yesterday and it shows where I stopped to send it to Laura and Hilary for proofreading. It changed a lot in the process.

There are still a few cartoons in the Maybe folder and more will be added in the coming weeks. I’ll occasionally pull one or two out to post in these batches of roughs. You will eventually see them all.

I need another name for the Maybe folder. Maybe “Island of misfit cartoons.” Any suggestions?

Signed prints: The signed prints are just $40.00 each. Every cartoon on this site is available. You can pay through PayPal. If you don’t like PayPal, you can snail mail it to Clay Jones, P.O. Box 3721, Fredericksburg, VA 22402. I can mail the prints directly to you or if you’re purchasing as a gift, directly to the person you’re gifting.

Notes on my book, Tales From The Trumpster Fire: There are 19 copies of my book in stock, which go for $45.00 each, signed. Also, I have copies of my first book from 1997, Knee-Deep in Mississippi available for $20.00.

Tip Jar: if you want to support the cartoonist, please send a donation through PayPal to You can also snail it to P.O. Box 3721, Fredericksburg, VA 22402.

Watch me draw:



  1. I think you should keep Gay Dwarf Hell a little longer. The issue is bound to come up again and this cartoon is hysterical. I love the cartoons that make me laugh. I’d love this one for my collection even in rough form.

    Liked by 1 person

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