A day in the life of SUPERMAN Group Editor Matt Idelson

A day in the life of SUPERMAN Group Editor Matt Idelson

By Matt Idelson Friday, April 17th, 2009
Ah, dawn in the city. I start going through emails. Renato Guedes has sent us pencils for pages 9-10 of SUPERMAN #688. Wow, these are gorgeous! Renato has been nice enough to draw this critical scene first, as we’ll be flashing back to it in SUPERMAN ANNUAL #14 a couple of months later.  Some more gorgeous pencils are in from guest-penciller Fernando Dagnino for SUPERGIRL #41—man, he’s SO good. Looking at our schedule, however, I’m thinking it might be more logical to ask Fernando to draw the upcoming SUPERGIRL ANNUAL rather than ACTION #878-879. sg-4004600-cmyk-3-sm Dan pops his head into my office and wishes me a good morning. Communicate with Fernando’s agent, David, by email and put forth my suggestion. He’ll get back to me. Most of the other emails are either updates on work progress or artists stating their availability. I go through the lettering for SUPERMAN #687 one last time in preparation for the book to be sent off to the printer, then look over the latest inked pages from Pere Pérez for June’s ACTION ANNUAL. Really, really great stuff! Man, I’m lucky. Get an email from Greg Rucka saying how happy he is with the pages as well. Greg’s up early this morning—must be ‘cause he has kids. Jamal Igle drops me an email—he’s back from two weeks in France with his wife and daughter. I should have been a penciler. Enjoy a chat with Gary Frank regarding SUPERMAN: SECRET ORIGIN #2 and the cover he’s working on for SUPES: WORLD OF NEW KRYPTON #5. acannual_06-7 While on the phone with Gary, Pete Woods submits a design for a new character who will be playing a progressively larger role in the Superman books over the summer. All I can say is, “WOW!” I don’t know how he does it time and again, but Pete nails it on the first try. Assistant Editor Wil Moss strolls in with some last-second questions regarding the SUPES #687 coloring, specifically involving a scene deep in the heart of Metropolis’s sewers, were Atlas currently hangs his hat. As usual, he raises an excellent point, and splits to let colorist David Curiel know what we’re thinking. Then he returns with Editor Liz Gehrlein and affable Associate Editor Sean Ryan—must be time for our daily group meeting. We review the state of our respective books, running proposed solutions by each other, then get to discussing the various pitches we’re considering for a very-down-the-road 80-page book.  In the process, we eliminate a few repeating beats in a couple of the stories and see a theme for the overall book emerging. Also in the process, a good twenty more emails show up. sm-68704_rev The lunch hour arrives, which means eating at my desk and attempting to catch up on email. I also spend a bit chatting with James Robinson, who is putting the finishing touches on a Captain Atom story he is co-writing with Greg. He, Greg and I then share our thoguhts—via email—on the initial designs that come in from the Captain Atom artist, CAFU. Simply stunning! We explore steering some of the architectural designs in a slightly different direction. All of the sudden it’s 1:30, which means it’s time for the weekly Superman writers’ chat. Liz, Sean and Wil reemerge from their offices to join me, and we phone up Greg, James and SUPERGIRL writer Sterling Gates and begin a very focused discussion on our next crossover between the Super-books in August. What these guys have come up with is simply amazing, and I’m getting more and more excited about the event. About five minutes in, Geoff Johns joins us—in person!  Geoff’s taken up temporary residence in our fine city while constructing the upcoming BLACKEST NIGHT epic. I choose not to ask Geoff who’s feeding his dog, just in case he’s forgotten about that.  The call ends at around 2:45, but that’s only because we editorial people have a meeting coming up which we need to prepare for. 3:00 on Wednesdays means it’s time for our weekly staff meeting. Part of the focus each week is on the general status of the many books coming out from now through about 12 weeks down the line. Dan also goes through a couple of top-secret items with the full staff, then fills us in on his trip to Seattle’s Emerald Con. Sounds like a great show, and the fan response he got is really gratifying to hear. The rest of the day is divided between returning emails, finding reference for artists, taking stock of the status of our covers and solicits for the next catalogue cycle with Wil, and preparing as best we can for what awaits us tomorrow. 5:30 rolls around and I head for my long train ride home, during which I’ll be reading Greg’s latest script pages for the ACTION ANNUAL and a short story by James for the upcoming SUPERMAN SECRET FILES detailing the humble beginnings of a certain Project 7734.