The official site of Frank Fradella

About Frank

seoul-41Frank Fradella is a professionally creative person working in the fields of art, publishing, podcasting, language acquisition, film, and video.

He is the author of more than a dozen books, including those in the Valley of Shadows series, Swan Song, and The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Drawing Basics (Alpha Books) — which he also illustrated. He is the founder and president of iHero Entertainment, whose groundbreaking illustrated prose magazine, Cyber Age Adventures, won numerous awards including the Writer’s Digest Grand Prize and the P & E Award for Best Fiction Magazine (2004). iHero reassembled its original creators to bring a new superhero magazine (“I, Hero”) to market in 2010. Frank has also done work in comics, including Gene Simmons House of Horrors and the upcoming Alexander the Great graphic novel from Campfire.

Frank is the creator of two successful tarot decks, both published by U.S. Games Systems, Inc.. In the Fradella Adventure Tarot, he teamed with artist JP Dupras to create a deck featuring the heroes and villains of the iHero Universe, creating the world’s first complete superhero tarot deck. He also teamed with the late Jeziel Sanchez Martinez to create the breathtaking Undersea Tarot.

Frank is the creative force behind Paper Lantern Productions, a global film production company with several projects in various stages of development. Their recent film, Vox Angelica, took high honors in the Miami 48-Hour Film competition, and another, A Spud’s Life, took home several awards in the National Film Challenge. Frank spent nearly a year in China doing pre-production work on his first feature film, Fu & Far Between. He plans to return to finish the film once financing is secured.

As a video producer, he has done work for National Geographic, Sears, Yelp, the Yellow Pages, and hundreds more.

Since 2005, Frank has brought his creative forces to bear with New Babel Books, a boutique publishing house dedicated to finding an audience for hard-to-classify works in the field of sci-fi, fantasy, superheroes, horrors, art and language.

He lives in Austin, Texas with his wife, twin boys, and a pitt bull named Lady Jane. He rarely sleeps. He always dreams.

Writing & Publishing


Frank is the author of more than 15 books, on topics ranging from art instruction to urban fantasy to superheroes. He has written for comics, novels, anthologies, graphic novels, art instruction books, foreign language blogs and more. He is currently working on a new chapter in the iHero Universe, and a final book in the Valley of Shadows Trilogy.

New Babel Books

What began as a small imprint for Frank’s own esoteric works (Dead Things, The Absent Lover, etc.) has flourished into a successful house of authors whose work doesn’t fit neatly into the pigeon holes of contemporary publishing. New Babel has been at the forefront of the ever-evolving landscape of publishing and they continue to push the envelope. They are dedicated to working with independent bookstores to revitalize a marketplace ravaged by big box chains who pushed out the mom and pop stores long ago. More information about New Babel Books can be found here.

iHero Entertainment

Launched in 1999 under the name Cyber Age Adventures, iHero was the first publisher to produce superhero prose stories on a monthly basis. A year later they were lauded by Writer’s Digest in their first ever Zine Awards with the coveted Grand Prize and Frank was invited to join their staff as part of a team dedicated to determining the future of online publishing. Since then, iHero has continued to deliver their unique brand of award-winning fiction, including a new series of novels and anthologies published by New Babel Books.

Art & Tarot


After the success of the best-selling art instructional manual, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Drawing Basics — his first publication as an artist — Frank took a few years and focused on his art privately, experimenting with various mediums ranging from watercolor to oils to charcoal and markers. Sketchfoolery is the follow-up to that earlier book, offering insights into his own personal journey while offering tips to artists who are at the beginning of their own voyage. The Sketchfoolery site can be found here!


In Frank’s quest to bring superheroes into non-traditional arenas, he created the Fradella Adventure Tarot for U.S. Games Systems, Inc. with JP Dupras, making it the world’s first complete superhero tarot deck. He was surprised by how much he enjoyed the process of creating that deck and a year later signed another deal to deliver the beautiful Undersea Tarot (also published by USG), with art by the late Jeziel Sanchez Martinez.



While living in Beijing, Frank started LINGO, a free weekly podcast featuring the very best in global pop music. He started the show as a “study break” for his friends in the language industry. As the show gained in popularity, listeners from around the world sent in their “hello, hello” greetings and became an living part of the show. After several years of running the show on a weekly basis, LINGO’s main site went away and now the show lives on with sporadic episodes announced on the show’s Facebook Fan Page.


During his time in China, Frank was an integral part of the creation of a new Chinese language product for Innovate Language Learning, LLC — the folks who brought you such podcasts as KoreanClass101, JapanesePod101, and more than a dozen others. Frank co-wrote, co-produced, and co-hosted the Beginner series for ChineseClass101 which was rated the #1 educational podcast in the world in iTunes within weeks of their launch. Frank speaks Mandarin through years of self-study, though it’s been slipping due to lack of practice since he returned to the States.

Film & Video

Paper Lantern Productions

Paper Lantern Productions is the film production company Frank started in 2003 to create “movie trailers” for his books — one of the first authors to do so. Discovering a passion for the process of filmmaking, Frank began developing stories aimed at an all-new medium. Since then he’s produced several award-winning films, has mentored other filmmakers, and is in the process of producing his first feature film.

Minuteman Video

In 2012, Paper Lantern divorced itself from commercial video production and Minuteman Video was born. Focused entirely on producing 60-second web videos for small businesses, Minuteman Video has produced spots for hundreds of small businesses… and quite a few larger ones, too. Their client list includes National Geographic, Sears, Yelp, the Yellow Pages, Simon & Schuster and more. The official site is located here.



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  • Phone: 605-988-7030
  • Skype: newbabel


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