You may know Margaret Atwood as a Canadian novelist and poet, author of The Handmaid's Tale and Oryx and Crake. Did you know she also designs superhero costumes? Or, she did this year—for two of her Twitter followers.

Atwood's adventures in costume design began when Dr. Joel Topf, a Detroit nephrologist, (who detailed the story on his blog) recommended one of Atwood's books—Oryx and Crake—to a friend on Twitter. Surprisingly, Atwood wrote back:

@kidney_boy: @DrSnit..have you read Oryx & Crake & Year of the Flood? Super good eco/dystopian/gene-tech future M:Tx! Happy you like!less than a minute ago via web

And, for reasons beknownst only to her, offered to make "superhero comix costumes" for Topf and his friend, DrSnit:

@kidney_boy & @DrSnit: And I'd like to design your Kidney Boy and Dr. Snit superhero comix costumes!less than a minute ago via web

This was a joke, right? "She can't be serious," Topf thought. And yet, five days later, Atwood was still hard at work:

@DrSnit and @kidney_boy: still tinkering with your outfits and magic words... can one make a crown out of painkiller pills?less than a minute ago via web

How hard was Atwood working? So hard it took her a month to get the costume right. But, true to her word, Atwood drew a costume, and uploaded it to TwitPic on October 9:

@DrSnit: Here's your Superhero outfit! @kidney_boy: Yours will come.. http://twitpic.com/2w76kyless than a minute ago via Twitpic

How a Famous Author Designed a Doctor's Superhero Costume

It took Atwood another couple weeks to come up with a costume for kidney_boy—but she finished yesterday:

Sketch of @kidney_boy @DrSnit: choosing colours - purple, orange, red? Boots too large? Hope you like... http://twitpic.com/30hsdvless than a minute ago via Twitpic

How a Famous Author Designed a Doctor's Superhero Costume

Just in time for Halloween, right?

[Precious Bodily Fluids via The Atlantic]