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William Steig
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    (November 14, 1907-October 3, 2003)
    Born in Brooklyn, New York
    Cartoonist and children's author
    Drew over 2,600 cartoons for 'The New Yorker'
    Wrote the children's books 'Sylvester and the Magic Pebble' (1968), 'Dominic' (1972), 'The Amazing Bone' (1976), 'Abel's Island' (1976), 'Doctor DeSoto' (1982), 'Rotten Island' (1984) and 'Shrek!' (1990)
    He dropped out of three colleges, including a five-day stint at Yale's School of Fine Art.
    He was married four times, divorced three times.
    He rarely got out of bed before noon.
    He would rejuvenate himself by sitting in one of quack doc Wilhelm Reich's 'orgone accumulator' boxes.
    He said, 'I've always despised old people. I got angry at my father when he began to show signs of age.'
    When he asked the art editor at The New Yorker if he was difficult, he was told that he complained more than all the magazine's other illustrators combined.
    'Sylvester and the Magic Pebble' got banned from some libraries for depicting police officers as pigs. (Anthropomorphic pigs were shown in other professions as well.)
    While at City College of New York, he was an All-American in water polo.
    He carved wood, and had a one man show of his work at New York's Downtown Gallery (1939).
    He was the first 'New Yorker' cartoonist to provide both the illustration and caption.
    He drew for 'The New Yorker' longer than any other cartoonist.
    'Newsweek' dubbed him 'The King of Cartoons.'
    Jules Feiffer said that his work 'took cartoons into the subconscious and were as revolutionary in terms of cartooning as Freud's original work was in terms of psychology.'
    He won the prestigious Caldecott Award for 'Sylvester and the Magic Pebble.'
    His book was the basis for the animated film 'Shrek.' (About which he declared, 'It's vulgar and disgusting and I love it.')

Credit: C. Fishel

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