RICH INTERVIEWS: Dolan Waddick Co-Creator/Writer for “Unholy Nightmare”

First Comics News: How did you and Aurelio Mazzara get together to create “Unholy Nightmare”?

Dolan Waddick: This all started with our work on Born of Blood issues 5 & 6 last year. I became Aurelio’s new brother after his love of my scripts for issues 5 & 6 which I was flabbergasted by. I mean, this is my second year as a professional comic book writer, and I have had this amazing professional artist for years saying he loves my scripts! What’s going on!?

We would talk every day, and the more we talked every day, we both discovered we shared a love of horror, gore, action, and superheroes. And you definitely see SOME of these elements in issues 5 & 6 of Born of Blood.

After we wrapped the first arc for Born of Blood, I became an “in-demand” writer and was working on around 4 scripts at once back in March this year. Aurelio and I would continue chatting each day and he would send me these awesome character designs that he wanted to use in a superhero or horror comic. As he’s sharing these pieces with me, I’m silently saying to myself, “Don’t say yes, don’t commit to anything, you’re busy enough as it is.” But the more we started talking about the characters and the backstories, I had to admit to myself that there was something potentially special here and that’s something I couldn’t pass up on. Before we knew it, I had a script done in a few days and another draft done a week later.

1st: Why call this comic “Unholy Nightmare”?

Dolan: When you take a step back and look at EVERYTHING that’s going to happen in this comic, (and potentially series), the places we go, ON TOP of the monsters, there are some truly unholy elements that would be considered nightmares for many. The main character in particular, The Recluse, transforms into something that I’ve had nightmares of since I was a 5-year-old boy.

1st: Can you tell us about Recluse and Wolf?

Dolan: Well, The Recluse (Edward Loftmore), is a John Wick/Spider-Man vigilante in Chicago. He has a tragic backstory that’s led him down this path as a punisher-type hero with some spider abilities. We see him go from a happy-go-lucky twenty-something with spider powers to a vigilante. But, in this issue, we discover that there may be MORE to him than meets the eye…

The Wolf (Jenny Talbot), is a Chicago Police Officer who’s working with Recluse to help clean up the city. As with The Recluse, there MAY be more to her than even SHE’s aware of.

1st: What is the relationship between Recluse and Wolf?

Dolan: GREAT question. We see that they started as partners but things have gotten…complicated. Things tend to get between men and women who work closely with one another.

1st: Why combine the two elements of superheroes and monsters?

Dolan: That’s what Aurelio and I love the most: Superheroes and monsters. We talked to each other and said that it’s really only been done well once with The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, BUT, they weren’t really superheroes and were monsters to a degree. We said to each other, “Let’s just go for it. They’re superheroes who are monsters who have to take down evil monsters.” So when someone picks this up and reads it, I hope they see from the story BOTH elements at play here.

1st: Is Dracula/Vlad done in the traditional style or more modern?

 Well, we’re having some fun with Dracula in this. Both of us see Dracula as a powerful, terrifying, and sexual being. We will see him fighting, feeding, as well as playing with the heads and emotions of some of the team members. He may hit on Recluse one minute and The Wolf the minute after.

He’s going to have a few different outfits, one of which is an update to his Dell comics costume that Aurelio wanted, so that’s going to be cool. But his final form will be EPIC.

1st: Can you tell us about the villains the heroes will face?

Dolan: There will be gang members, undead humans, undead gang members, creatures from…let’s say someplace else, and there MAY be a traitor among them…

1st: Is there a lot of violence and gore in this comic?

Dolan: A LOT is the best way to put It. There will be beheadings, dismemberments, bones breaking, blood, and guts – this series will NOT be short of it! That’s one thing Aurelio and I both wanted in this series: no holding back.

1st: How would you describe Aurelio Mazzara’s art style?

Dolan: Oh man, Aurelio is the artist I think every writer dreams of working with. He’s so detailed, creative, and quick, that I don’t think I could EVER get this from anyone else.

I can’t begin to tell you how blessed I am to have been able to work with him on Born of Blood, to become his “brother” and to partner with him on this project. His art style has that great dynamic style you’d expect from Image, Marvel, or DC comics from the 90s, and that’s what we both agreed this series needs. His style is powerful and in your face.

1st: Besides a character you have worked on which other one would you most like to write about?

You know, I started working on a Batman story last year that I would LOVE to tell, that I think would be very powerful and very justified at this point. I don’t want to get into details because I don’t want someone stealing it.

Dolan: Have you ever had writer’s block if so how did you get over it?

Actually, yeah, I’ve gotten it a few times. I actually do a couple of things to get over it.

1. I don’t think about it all and go out in public, taking everything and everyone in. Listening to conversations and observing people. Before I know it, it comes to me.

2. I’ll go to the gym, and hop on the treadmill for an hour working out the plot.

1st: What is the link to your Kickstarter and why do you have a Kickstarter?

Dolen: The link is –

Well, Aurelio and I have been associated with several successful Kickstarter campaigns at this point, so we figured, let’s go for it. We also have a great campaign manager in Murphey Luedke who’s steering us toward success.

We considered publishers, BUT, we both knew that he and I both wanted to own this, and didn’t want someone else to which is probably what would have happened if we’d gone down that route.

Plus, If this is successful, we can afford to do this on our own and keep telling our own stories without someone looking over us.

1st: If you could be any monster which one would you choose and why?

Dolan: Honestly, probably the invisible man. There could be a lot of fun to be had with that

1st: Any final words for your fans?

Dolan: If you enjoyed or liked Born of Blood, I believe you will really love Unholy Nightmare. Aurelio, Gene Jiminez, Kel Nuttall, and I are busting our butts to make an awesome comic book that’s worth every bang for your buck. In no way will this comic be low-stakes, boring, or bloodless. This comic WILL shock you.

I hope you take the time to check out the Kickstarter and see what we are offering which we believe is BETTER than what you’d get from the big 2 OR Image comics!

Coming soon: UNHOLY NIGHTMARE #1

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