I've been watching horror movies for as long as I remember. By the time I was 12, I had already watched The Shining, Salem's Lot, It, Carrie, Christine, Pet Semetary, Cat's Eye, and, yeah, I guess there is a pattern right there.
Stephen King pretty much defined my childhood. And of course, later on, I started reading the novels. I actually have a first edition of Doctor Sleep. So, after writing super hero stories, slice of life comics, philosophical, and comedy/satire, I realized one thing I grew up on I never really tackled: horror.
I have some horror elements from time to time on Warlord and DTF6, and a smaller extent Exorcist, but nothing full blown horror/suspense. I've always had ideas, but they never went as far as a daydream of a story. But I got the bug while being a student at SVA two years ago.
I had to draw an original story for Klaus Jansen's storytelling class. To stretch out of my comfort zone, I decided to do a short suspense/ghost story that was floating in my head for years. I was actually really encouraged to try my hand at doing more writing than what I do, and it started turning the wheels in my imagination.
"What if I do an actual mini-series, or a novel?" A title came to mind while I was daydreaming again: "Hell Beneath You". But with like other ideas, it never really got out of the daydream stage.
That is, until this past summer. I saw that while we are having great success with the newly released Project: New Wave by brother and co-founder, Manuel Carmona, and Warlord hit a HUGE milestone reaching chapter 25 and celebrating 13 years on the internet, I felt a calling. An itch. And I thought to myself "well, horror is one thing we don't have at TC yet, so, who knows, maybe it's time." And not too long after, the first trailer for Doctor Sleep came out.
I was mesmerized by it. The clips combining clips from The Shining conjured up all those childhood memories of watching the Torrence family disintegrate at the Overlook Hotel. All those emotions as a child watching Danny running through those halls and that maze came back. I was a kid again in a small apartment in Williamsburg watching horror movies in a cold winter night with snacks and hot chocolate. And so, I thought, "it's time."
Hell Beneath You has finally gotten out of the daydream stage and into the pre-production stage. The story tree, titles for the issues, beginning, middle, and ending, have already been visualized and drafted.
Two promotional posters are already up, and I made an exclusive image that will only be here on the blog (at least for a long while). Warlord, Exorcist, DTF6 are my love letters to the super hero comics I grew up with. The Cannon Girl is my love letter to the indie comics that expanded my horizons. Weepaman y Weepito and Stupid the Cat were my love letters to irreverent comedy.
Hell Beneath You is my love letter to horror. It's the kid in me that watched all those Stephen King movies, and for good measure, other movies like Witch Board, Halloween, Hell Cop, Silent Night Deadly Night, Nightmare on Elm St, Hell Night, The Exorcist, CHUD, Alien, and many, many others.
My hope with story is not just to scratch that horror itch I've had for a while, but that who knows, maybe one day, somehow, some kid will happen into this story, become a family thing to talk over hot chocolate, and maybe even help them bring out stories of their own some day. And I can't wait for those stories to come out long after I'm gone.
To those that read all of this, as always, thank you for reading my ramblings, and I hope to spook you soon!