haunts (2022)

drawn by kaylee rowena

as kitty horrorshow said in her game anatomy: in the psychology of the modern, civilized human being, it is difficult to overstate the significance of the house. i'm fascinated by haunted houses and the way they can turn something so ubiquitous — we spend so much time in our homes, and barring unsafe or unstable housing, don't tend to think about just how important they are — on its head. a shelter becomes a cage; windowpanes become a ribcage; cold static walls become warm and loving arms. haunted houses can love or hate their inhabitants, and i hope to depict that full spectrum of emotional possibilities in this series, and sometimes both ends of the spectrum at once.

the majority of the illustrations in this series are homes people sent to me — their present homes, childhood homes, grandparents' homes, or other houses that are personally significant to them — along with ghost stories about things that have happened there, which i then interpreted into varying degrees of horror.

the book

in march 2022, i ran a kickstarter to print the first 50 of these illustrations in a book titled haunts! the kickstarter succeeded with 649 backers.

digital copies of the book are available on my itch.io page as of may 2023!

haunts in bookstores:


  • kathryn hemmann for women write about comics: I recently had the pleasure of flipping through Kaylee Rowena’s zine Haunts, which collects the American comic artist’s illustrations of haunted houses. I especially appreciate the epilogue, which takes the form of a short essay about houses and hauntings and memory. It’s a fantastic piece of writing [...] and the combination of Rowena’s colorful art and Geller’s video essay have helped me appreciate the magic and mystery of walls that continue upright and doors that remain sensibly shut.

in total, there are over 50 illustrations and counting in this series. here's a small selection of them.