Thursday, September 16, 2010
From the Archives 7
Another bit of XOMBI history from late 1995. This was the rough mockup for an ad promoting the series. It used artwork by J.J. Birch from the cover of issue #19 along with a quote by Harlan Ellison. This ad was probably thrown together before issue #19 hit stands, since the reason it was never used is that XOMBI was soon cancelled ending in a double-sized issue #21.
I was, and still am, thrilled with the quote from Harlan Ellison, the second of two he provided to support the series (the first appears on the cover of XOMBI #16). Harlan was always a literary hero of mine, so discovering his enthusiasm for something I was writing was a big deal to me and really added pressure to keep up the quality of the work. I can't thank him enough for all of the plugging and promoting of XOMBI that he did all on his own. He seems to generate a lot of horror stories from people, but I simply find him to be someone who is simply honest. If he thinks something, or someone is worth his time, he will give his all to that thing or person. If something falls short for him, he'll let you know and want no more to do with it. I had a great phone conversation with him while I was writing THE X-FILES comic book series in which he expressed his extreme disappointment in the work I was doing there. Everything he said was right on the money and tied in to the usual restrictions that come with playing with someone else's licensed characters, especially when those characters are on what is currently the hottest tv show on. There's not much you are allowed to do with such a property, and my hands were tied. Again, upon hearing this he was equally as supportive as any other time I've talked to him. I didn't find his dismissal of my work on the X-Files to be a nasty rant, but simply the opinion of someone who was disappointed because they knew I could have been doing so much better. And he was right.