Rinky Dink by Mimi Pond
'Rinky Dink' (LA Times, 1 June 2008).

Mimi Pond is an American cartoonist, active in many fields as, among others, as novelist, TV script writer and a comics artist. She gained her first fame as the author of 'The Valley Girl's Guide of Life' (1982). Her best known work as a cartoonist are the autobiographical graphic novels 'Over Easy' (2014) and 'The Customer Is Always Wrong' (2017).

Early life and career
Mimi Pond was born in San Diego, California. Her father was an amateur cartoonist who learned her how to do draw. She enjoyed drawing as a child and considers Aubrey Beardsley, Hillary Knight, Louise Fitzhugh, Robert Crumb, MK Brown, Aline Kominsky, Tina Fey, Charles Burns, Art Spiegelman, Marjane Satrapi, Lynda Barry and Amy Poehler as her graphic influences. Between 1975 and 1978 Pond studied at the California School of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, California, but never graduated.  Luckily she met Shary Flenniken in 1981, whom she considers her mentor. Flenniken was the first person to buy her cartoons and let Pond stay at her apartment. She sold her first comics to National Lampoon and The Village Voice, while working as a waitress. In 1982, she moved to New York City. Unfortunately she ran out of money and didn't have a back-up plan on what to do next?

The Valley Girl's Guide Of Life
Her salvation came from an unexpected corner. In 1982 avant-garde rock artist Frank Zappa had recorded a novelty song, 'Valley Girl' (1982), with vocals by his daughter Moon Unit. The song is a satirical attack on a specific kind of young women from the San Fernando Valley in L.A., whose accent sounds rather imbecilic. Much of the stereotypes attached to them are comparable to those attributed to "dumb blondes." Much to their surprise 'Valley Girl' became the biggest hit of Zappa's career! Naturally he wasn't entirely happy with this, since it gave many people the wrong impression what his experimental music was all about. Things became even worse when advertisers jumped on the bandwagon and turned it into a trend. Soon many impressionable girls actually started imitating the 'Valley Girl speak'. Pond was contacted by Dell Books to write a book for this demographic. She took the offer, despite not having heard Zappa's song yet. She went out and bought it, despite not even having a record player at the time. To study her upcoming book Pond travelled back to L.A., where she intermingled with teenage girls and took down notes. The resulting book, 'The Valley Girl's Guide of Life' (1982), became a bestseller and launched Pond's career. She wrote everything in an ironic fashion, but nevertheless treated it seriously enough that her target audience found her book funny and recognizable. By 1984 Hollywood made a 'Valley Girl' romantic movie, starring Nicolas Cage in his debut role. As such Pond could profit from the 'Valley Girl' cultural phenomenon for quite a while. 

Other books
From that moment on, Pond published several other humour books, including 'Secrets of the Powder Room' (Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1983), 'Shoes Never Lie' (Berkley Books, 1985), 'A Groom of One's Own' (Dutton, 1991) and 'Splitting Hairs' (Simon and Schuster, 1998). Her work has been published in The Village Voice, Adweek, Seventeen, Glamour, Redbook, Manhattan Inc.,The New York Times and Los Angeles Times.

TV scriptwriting
Pond also wrote scripts for several TV series, including 'Designing Women' (1986-1993), 'Pee-wee's Playhouse' (1986-1990) and the pilot episode of Matt Groening's 'The Simpsons': 'Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire' (1989).

Comics career
Pond drew a comic strip for the girls' magazine Seventeen in the late 1980s. On 25 May 2013 she created a webcomic, 'Squick From the Void', based on a visit she and Vanessa Davis once paid to a rather sad and depressing hamster show.

Over Easy
In 2014 Pond published a graphic novel, 'Over Easy', which looks back at her early years as a waitress in California. Everything in the comic book has a green colour, which she preferred over colourizing her drawings on every page.

The Customer Is Always Wrong
Her next graphic novel, 'The Customer Is Always Wrong' (2017), follows the same themes as her previous book. Set in Oakland in the late 1970s, it follows a young waitress at the Imperial Cafe trying to deal with drunks, junks, thieves and people bordering between charming and creepy. 

Personal life
She is married to artist Wayne White. Since September 2011 she has her own Twitter page. 

L.A. staycation at Super King Market by Mimi Pond August 24, 2008
L.A. staycation at Super King Market (24 August 2008).

Series and books by Mimi Pond in stock in the Lambiek Webshop:

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