How meta. In 1940 Dale Messick created the character of newspaper reporter Brenda Starr for the Chicago Tribune. Initially meeting resistance from editor Joseph Medill Patterson, it was originally featured only in a supplement; it wasn't until 1945 that it became a daily strip. Messick a woman who adopted her masculine first name because of prejudice in the comics industry made her heroine a glamorous, globetrotting reporter who writes for the Flash. Starr had a years-long relationship with man of mystery Basil St. John, whom she eventually married after 36 years of courtship and later divorced. The strip's current writer is Mary Schmich, a columnist at the Tribune. Artist June Brigman draws the journalistic beauty.