Nightmare Fuel, Issue 223

Nightmare Fuel, Issue 223


I guess I’ve pretty much always been into newsletters.

As I mentioned last issue, I had the chance to hang out with some friends from elementary, middle, and high school a bit ago. When we were kids, we had all been in a club called the X-Laser Knights (sometimes called the X-Lazer Knights because “lazer” with a “Z” is just cooler). A steady diet of Dungeons and Dragons, Gamma World, Flash Gordon, Thundarr the Barbarian, Star Wars, Tolkien, and comic books helped us shape a weird sci-fantasy universe of our own. In that universe, we had a lot of wild adventures and a lot of fun. 

While we were hanging out, my pal Taylor mentioned that he still had copies of some of the XLK newsletters I published when we were kids. He scanned them and sent them my way. 

The Power Key—stolen! Joe—abandoning his post! Vardell—finding a mystery dog! The mystery! The intrigue! I was telling STORIES, folks, and inviting people to my birthday party!

As I remember, I did maybe ten of these newsletters, then shifted to writing and drawing full-blown comic books featuring the members of the XLK. Thank goodness for my dad’s copier!

I wish someone still had some of those comics. 

Around the same time (maybe a little earlier) I was doing a one-sheet newsletter for my dad’s photography studio, too. It was called Heritage Studios News. There were fewer sonic sabers in that, but I’m pretty sure it was hosted by my own version of Obnoxio the Clown. 

There’s something in my brain that tells me I should start doing a newsletter featuring the XLK (or a group like the XLK) still going on adventures like what we described all these years later. 

The birthday party, by the way, was awesome. My dad took us all to Space Odyssey, a super cool arcade, and we had a blast.

This week, my son turns 16 years old. We threw a party for him over the weekend, and he was surrounded by a massive gathering of many of his best friends. They’re all good kids, and it warmed my withered old heart to how much the kid is loved. It also struck me that time is not slowing down, not even for a second, and it all goes by far too fast. Soon, he’ll have a driver’s license. Then, before I know it, he’ll be graduating. Then going to college. Then embarking on a career. And I fear I’ll be left in the dust of his awesomeness and forgotten. 

Did you miss out on the free JUMPSCARE comic that was recently posted! Here’s a reminder! This is a new comic, not a reprint or an excerpt, introducing the character of Jumpscare, who will appear in her own series early next year! Jumpscare is part of the BEYOND MORTAL universe, which kicks off in July with a new OGN from Dark Horse!

If you haven’t pre-ordered BEYOND MORTAL from your favorite comic book retailer, now is the time!

And I have it on pretty good authority that another free BEYOND MORTAL comic will be dropping this week!

I’m still playing a lot—a LOT—of catch-up right now, writing wise. I knocked a few comic book short stories off my to-do list, did quite a bit of work on pitches for the feature film, shot video segments for Tremendicon, and outlined a bunch of stories. I need to figure out how to focus some time and effort to the novel. That’s a “me” problem, I think. I’ve also been working on bits and pieces of a bunch of small side projects.

For example, here’s an image by Gary Bedell that poses the question… Who are the Horror Brothers?


The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers and Godzilla have been caught in a sprawling space-time scheme orchestrated by Rita Repulsa and Astronema! They team up to save alternate versions of the Power Rangers from being targeted by sinister forces. As the Power Rangers and Godzilla transverse realities with the help of a newfound ally, the shape of the foes they face become clear: the Psycho Rangers! But the Psycho Rangers have siphoned powers and abilities from beyond their own world, and if the Rangers and Godzilla can't stop them, the entire multiverse will suffer the consequences!

Easily one of the craziest books I’ve ever worked on. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If you’re a Power Rangers fan… if you’re a Godzilla fan… you absolutely do not want to miss out on what we’re doing in this series. You thought Psycho Ranger Ghidorah was wild? Just wait!

Still motoring through THE SOUTHERN BOOK CLUB’S GUIDE TO SLAYING VAMPIRES by Grady Hendrix and enjoying it. Hendrix has a great way of just making me so, so angry at supporting characters—when they take actions that each and every one of us would take on the regular. 

On the re-reading front, I’m gearing up for a Skipp and Spector marathon, with THE SCREAM, THE LIGHT AT THE END, and ANIMALS ready to go on Kindle and Audible. I loved these books so much and revisit them from time to time. I also love that Audible and Kindle sync so my bookmarks on each update when I listen or when I read. If only THE BRIDGE was on Audible, too, my happiness would be complete. 

Tommy Lee Edwards, myself, and Steve Orlando at Ultimate Comics on a very busy Free Comic Book Day a couple of weeks ago. 

Banner - things to come
Banner - events

All events are subject to change at a moment’s notice, but here is where I’ll be appearing in the next several months!I 

Banner - where to find me

CULLEN'S AMAZON STORE - Listen! If you have a local comic shop or bookshop, PLEASE visit them and order your books from them. If you don't have a shop, though, or if you can't get my books from your local bookseller for some reason, this Amazon shop has tons of options. 

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