Sans snarky tone, these are valid questions that one ill-informed about what takes place outside of his small social and professional circle should ask. Editors should interact with consumers in order to remain aware of industry trends and to gain insight into areas they know nothing about (in the case of DC’s editorial staff, how to reach out to female and minority consumers and add a healthy dose of diversity to their current creative bench).
A creator isn’t going to be considered for any position if he has not made himself visible to those in a position to hire him. And in the case of comics, where cronyism abounds and editors are often (1) working with a very small and stable Rolodex and (2) have absolutely no interest in searching for new talent, visibility is difficult to achieve.
And if you are an editor walking that same well-worn path you have always walked when searching for talent, the angry cries from disgruntled fans can be disconcerting and exasperating. Where am I supposed to find these female artists? Where am I supposed to find these minority writers? Do you think I have time to read random scripts when I have two books to put out on time—and one of my artists just had a baby, my star writer is passed out in a bar, and my old industry buddy is complaining about lean times? Please.
But that fan has all the time in the world to venture off the beaten path. And she has discovered amazing creators who are producing fantastic work. And she can’t comprehend why they are being ignored.
I can. That editor and that fan? They visit different tables at conventions. They attend different parties. They read different websites. They follow different people on Twitter. Same industry, different worlds. And the majority of female and minority creators? They aren’t chilling in the one that EICs and CFOs inhabit.
But that doesn’t provide an answer to the question of the day. You say you want more black writers. Who should we have considered?
- Marguerite Abouet
- Kyle Baker
- Marc Bernardin
- Carol Burrell
- Percy Carey
- Keith Knight
- Jeremy Love
- Jamar Nicholas
- Jay Potts
- Christopher Priest
- Brandon Thomas
- Lance Tooks
- C. Spike Trotman
This is in no way a complete list of black writers! There are so many others out there creating! However, these are the men and women found on the path that I walk. These are the names from my bookshelves and feeds—established, professional, capable of producing quality work, and well aware of how the comics industry works.
There’s my answer. I’m sure there are many others who would be happy to provide you with theirs. All you have to do is ask.