Pearls Before Swine Figurines — The Choice is Yours

So at one of my recent book signings, a Pearls fan (and professional toy maker) presented me with a great figurine of me, Stephan.  It’s made out of resin and is about four inches high.


I got his contact information and asked if he’d want to make figurines of some of the other Pearls characters.  He said yes.

So the plan right now is to start out with a set of four Pearls characters.  We’re not yet sure if they would be sold individually or as a set.

But I’d like your feedback on which characters you’d like to own as figurines.


And if you’d like to see a specific pose (Rat hitting someone with a bat?  Pig jumping in the air?  The lemmings leaning over the cliff?), feel free to suggest it in the comment section below.

Thanks for your feedback.




I Think I Got Screwed

If you ask me, the censorship code for comics is way too strict.

For example, here is today’s original strip:


But here is how it was changed for newspapers:


Is “Screw you” really that offensive of a phrase?  It doesn’t feel that way to me.

What do you think?





The Timmy Failure/Pearls Tour Continues Next Week

The Timmy Failure/Pearls tour continues next week.  And it is making a surprise stop in….


See dates and locations below!

Thursday, March 13, 4:30 p.m.Foxtale Book Shoppe, 105 E. Main Street, #138, Woodstock, Georgia

For the Atlanta stop, I won’t be doing a presentation, but I will be signing books, drawing characters in the books, and kissing babies.  So if you want your baby kissed, or just feel the need to touch my arm, stop on by.

Saturday, 3/15/14, 2:45 p.m. – Southwest Florida Reading Festival, Harborside Event Center & Centennial Park, Fort Myers River District, Fort Myers, FL

Sunday, 3/16/14, 2 p.m. – Books & Books, 265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables, FL

So come on out and meet me, and see if I’m as annoying as you’d assume.  And bring beer (although I’m not supposed to tell you that, because my kids book publisher gets mad when I do).  So hush hush on the beer.

And wear clothes.


Stephan “Soon to be Sleeping on Your Couch” Pastis


The Falling Down Tour is Set — Come Fall Down With Me (UPDATED AGAIN ON 2/18)

(Good problems to have!  We once again hit the venue capacity for a location — this time in Richmond, Virginia.  New venue information below.)

Get ready to bring beer to your favorite cartoonist!  (Or to me.)

Because the book tour for the latest Pearls treasury, Pearls Falls Fast, is all set.

cropped-falling-down-image-for-blog.jpgTen brand-new cities!  All Pearls tour virgins!

Come hear me yammer about my transition from evil lawyer to kindhearted cartoonist, hear the sordid history of Pearls, see readers’ favorite strips, marvel at the strips that made complainers complain, and watch me slander many of my fellow cartoonists. Afterwards, I shall sign your books (and usually draw a character in each), provided that at least someone brings me beer.

Below please find the “lucky” 10 cities, all destined to have me scrawl Rat on the bathroom wall of one of their fine, local dive bars:

Monday, 3/24           Vroman’s Bookstore, 695 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA       7:00pm

Tuesday, 3/25          Bookworks, 4022 Rio Grande Blvd NW, Albuquerque, NM       7:00pm

Thursday, 3/27        Swift Creek Middle School, 3700 Old Hundred Road, Midlothian, VA 7:00 pm

Friday, 3/28              Park Road Books, 4139 Park Rd, Charlotte NC                       6:00pm

Saturday, 3/29         WORD Bookstore, 123 Newark Ave, Jersey City, NJ                  4:00pm

Monday, 3/31           A Room of One’s Own, 315 W Gorham St, Madison, WI               6:00 pm

Tuesday, 4/1             Joseph-Beth Booksellers, 161 Lexington Green Circle, Lexington, KY 7:00pm

Wednesday, 4/2       West Shore UU Church, 20401 Hilliard Blvd, Rocky River, OH  7:00pm

Thursday, 4/3          BookPeople, 603 N. Lamar Blvd., Austin, TX                              7:00pm

Saturday, 4/5            Watermark Books, 4701 E Douglas Ave, Wichita, KS                5:00pm

Once again, all apologies to the cities not on the list.  But there’s only one me.  And as  charming as I am, someone has to stay home and draw the strip occasionally.

And for the cities that ARE on the list, come on out and party like it’s 1999, because that’s roughly where I’m still at fashion-wise.

And speaking of fashion, please…wear clothes.

Your almost-favorite cartoonist,



Building Your Own Complaint

Monday’s strip mentioned Queen Elizabeth going to the potty.


Tuesday’s strip mentioned a gay man.



What do you get when you read the Tuesday strip without the Monday strip?  Your very own complaint!



As Rat says in this strip: “My, I hate this comic strip.”  In this case I agree.  Calling gays “Queens” is very offensive to me, as a gay man.  Would you target black people by calling them “big lips”, etc.?  I didn’t think so.




I wonder what other complaints people could come up with if they took each of my strips out of context?

This could get fun.


On This, the 12th Anniversary of Pearls Before Swine, A How-To-Guide to Collecting Every Single Pearls Strip

I am often asked by readers for the easiest way to collect all the published Pearls Before Swine strips going back to the very first strip, which was published 12 years ago today, on December 31, 2001.  And I have to admit, it can get confusing.

After all, there have been 14 collections (the small books), 6 treasuries (the big books), 2 gift books (the hardcover books), and even one Pearls kids book (yes, I did a Pearls kids book).

So let me simplify things.  The quickest (and cheapest) way to collect every single strip from the very beginning is to just buy the 6 treasuries.  They are, in order of publication date:

Sgt. Piggy’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (published 2004)


Lions and Tigers and Crocs, Oh My! (published 2006)

lions and tigers

The Crass Menagerie (published 2008)


Pearls Sells Out (published 2009)

sells out

Pearls Blows Up (published 2011)

blows up

Pearls Freaks the #$%# Out (published 2012)


And if you’re a think-ahead kind of person, you can even pre-order the seventh treasury, which comes out in March, called Pearls Falls Fast (sneak peek below).


As an added bonus, each of these seven treasuries contains my commentary below many of the strips, which some people say is funnier than the strips (a compliment?  not a compliment?  I never know).

I’m also asked what the difference is between a “collection” and a “treasury.”  In short, a Pearls collection contains 9 months worth of strips.  A treasury contains 18 months worth of strips.  So a treasury is simply two collections put together.  Thus, there are twice as many Pearls collections (14) as treasuries (7).

So another way to collect every single Pearls strips is to just buy all 14 collections, and skip the treasuries altogether.  Either way, I get your money.  And that’s what’s important.

So if you want to go that route, here is a listing (and Amazon link to) every single collection, in order of publication:

BLTs Taste So Darn Good (published 2003)


This Little Piggy Stayed Home (published 2004)

stayed home

Nighthogs (published 2005)


The Ratvolution Will Not Be Televised (published 2006)


Da Brudderhood of Zeeba Zeeba Eata (published 2007)


The Sopratos (published 2007)


Macho Macho Animals (published 2008)


The Saturday Evening Pearls (published 2009)


50,000,000 Pearls Fans Can’t Be Wrong (published 2010)

50 million

When Pigs Fly (published 2010)

when pigs

Larry in Wonderland (published 2011)


Because Sometimes You Just Gotta Draw a Cover With Your Left Hand (published 2012)


Unsportsmanlike Conduct (published 2013)


Rat’s Wars (published 2013)

rats wars

And now I am going off to celebrate Pearls 12th anniversary as any cartoonist would.

By drawing more strips.