I've always wished I could draw. It wasn't on my list of Top Three Things at Which I Most Wish I Were Good, at least not until recently, but still: I've always wished I could draw. Not enough to actually, you know, put in the necessary work necessary to actually learn how. But I was a comic book fan—of course I wished I could draw.

But even if I were capable of illustrating my own graphic novel, I'm pretty sure I'd still choose to collaborate, at least some of the time, with others. Because that's one of my favorite things, when an idea starts getting kicked back and forth, and things you would never have thought of on your own suddenly appear and come to life. It was one of my favorite things about being in a band, too, when something would suddenly click and you were all on the same page, knowing what needed to happen next, where the song needed to go.

So I had an idea pop into my head out of the blue today: I decided to think about a character and then moments later another, related, character popped into my head. "Huh," I thought, "wouldn't it be kinda cool if..."

A minute later I had one of my favorite comic book creators on the phone. "Listen," I said. "wouldn't it be cool if..."

He listened, added a few things, we went back and forth for a while, and then the conversation moved on to other stuff. We talked for a bit, then he had to go pick up his kids.

Two minutes later, the phone rang. I was surprised to see his name on Caller ID. "I know how that story ends," he said, and told me the big climactic moment.


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