Horror novelist and comic book writer Brian Keene was badly burned in an accidental fire this week, and currently resides in a burn unit with first-degree burns on his face and second- and third-degree burns on his arms. Not much is known about the accident other than that Keene was burning brush in his York, Pennsylvania compound when winds shifted.
Keene, like many freelance writers, does not have health insurance, so friends have set up a GoFundMe to help pay his medical bills. Keene noted on Twitter that book and audiobook sales will also translate directly to royalties that will help him pay for medical care.
In addition to his prolific career as a horror novelist and his comics for publishers such as Antarctic Press and DC Comics, Keene also co-hosts the eponymous Horror Show with Brian Keene podcast alongside Dave Thomas (not the Wendy's guy) and Mary SanGiovanni. Keene's annual telethon for the Scares that Care charity raised over $20,000 this year to help others suffering from childhood illness, burns, and breast cancer.
On a personal note, if I may "break character" for a moment, Brian is one of the kindest, most principled people I've met since I started my comics "journalism" career, always willing to stand up for others and never afraid to use his fame and platform to fight injustice. If you can spare a few bucks to help out Brian Keene in this trying time, there's not another person who's "paid it forward" more.
That being said, we're confident that his new morphine drip will help him produce some of the best work of his career, once he regains the use of his pen. Pretty much all of the classic horror writers were on laudanum all the time, after all.
Click here for the GoFundMe. Below are some tweets with updates on his status: