Where to start...
Maybe the Dark Conspiracy RPG, or H. P. Lovecraft's writing, or Hellblazer, Sandman, or Preacher. Anything Vertigo. Maybe Tarantino's amazing dialogue skills or Garth Ennis' endless supply of over-the-top, borderline ridiculous characters.
But I think it really started in New Orleans for one of the most amazing bachelor parties ever. You walk down an empty street and you see this building, where a building has no possible business being, and you think: Jesus. What if there was a sniper in there. Where the hell would you run? Or you visit the French Quarter after three nights of drunken debauchery and find the most ridiculous knock-off replica of some African staff and you think: What if something was in that. What if it got out. Or you visit one of the state's oldest cathedrals, admiring the stained glass windows while fidgeting with a Catholic rosary and you wonder: What would it look like if something terrible; unspeakable; thrashed it's way through that window into a crowd of armed people hiding out here because they thought it promised them salvation.
The thing was done. Alex and I would not shut up about it and the story really wrote itself.
Neil Gaiman taught me to have an ending before I write the beginning.
Garth Ennis taught me that there is real horror in making the bizzare seem ordinary.
George R. Martin taught me that simple characters are a waste of everyone's time, especially the reader's.
Alex taught me to stop working in stereotypes. You should have seen the original Merrick and Dillan. (Strickland was going to be a dude.) Alex summed it up perfectly when he said: Jesus, Scott. They even look like Laurel and Hardy. It was a wake up call.
So what you've got left is a series of complex, over-the-top, bizzare characters encountering the violent, the gratuitous, the unspeakable, in a plot which is, in all due humility, fucking amazing. We have spent the time and the effort to do this right.
We are not wasting your time.