I know, I know -- this is the comic book industry and this is the Internet and writers and artists are only supposed to throw bricks and barbs at those men and women whose job it help take our boundless imaginations and forge them into stories month in and month out! But...
I could not let the passing of Bobbie Chase from editor to editorial director go without taking a moment to acknowledge just how lucky I've been to have worked so closely with her the last year.
As everyone not living under a rock knows, Bobbie has been my editor on both TEEN TITANS and RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS since long before any "civilian" had even heard the rumors behind the DC NEW 52. Tossed into the deep end of the pool and having to find her comic book legs after a few years outside of the industry, I marveled as I watched Bobbie immerse herself in all things DC. From our very first email exchange it was clear she had brought herself up to speed on even the smallest minutia of TEEN TITANS... so imagine our collective surprise to discover we'd been tasked with creating an exciting new take on such a legendary property.== TEASER ==
But that's the thing about Bobbie -- all the while I was staring at the stars every night praying for inspiration, or later on while Brett and I were slugging it out in ever escalating emails, or she was encouraging Kenneth's mad left of center awesomeness on Red Hood -- she was and is always her unflappable self. But she's not a statue and not some page trafficker, she's someone who cares passionately about every page of every issue. Yeah, she's a stickler for getting the book to the printers, but from the first inkling of a plot or character note, to the fleshing out and then the writing and penciling and inking and coloring, I have met few editors in my life who are so devoted to not only to the final product, but to every step along the way.
Bobbie was also the first editor I had on an ongoing series, my fealty to my current publisher prevents me from naming it here. And while that only lasted four issues before she was promoted, it was that show of faith in my abilities that propelled me from fill-in writer to someone other editors could take seriously as a writer who could carry the burden of a monthly title. (And we all know how that worked out!)
Hey, wait a minute -- I am starting to see a pattern! Bobbie hires me and then gets promoted! Hmmm!
I can remember the first time we had a disagreement about Teen Titans and I sent her an email suggesting something to the effect of "I don't mean to come off like I am disagreeing..." She wrote back and said "But you are disagreeing, you don't have to hide it. There are going to be times where you think I am one hundred per cent wrong and we'll argue and call each other names and think the other is completely intractable and it is totally fine. That is part of the process. But you should always stand up for your ideas and if you have the better argument I'll change my mind." How can you not love an editor like that?!
It was the Christmas before last that I spotted her on Facebook and we were excited to catch up after having not spoken to each other in, what, twelve years? (!!) I had been asked to work for DC on Teen Titans but I wasn't allowed to talk about it yet so I kept the conversation to "Yeah, things are going great." As it turned out, she had been asked to start at DC but was obligated to keep it under wraps, so she came back with "Yeah, things are going great for me too!" Little did either one us realize that in just a few short weeks the Powers That Be at DC were going to be reuniting us again! (And no article about Bobbie can be written without acknowledging her partner in crime, Katie Kubert. One day Katie is going to another extraordinary editor, and you can bookmark this page so you remember you heard it here first!)
Working with her has been nothing short of an honor.
Thanks to Illias Kyriazis for the image! Check out his website.