Zombie Q&A: R.J. Spears

Philip HarrisAuthors, Books, Interviews0 Comments

With Serial Killer Z on the shelves and The Walking Dead returning to screens this evening, it’s time for another interview with a zombie author (an author of zombie books that is, not a zombie that’s also author). Today, I’m talking to R.J. Spears, author of the Forget the Zombies series. Hi, tell us about yourself… My writing name is R.J. Spears. Google “Randy Spears,” but do it in safe company or alone and you’ll see why I went with R.J. Spears. I wanted to avoid any confusion, if you know what I mean. My trip to horror is a winding one. I was blessed with being introduced to Stephen King with his debut novel, Carrie, and that captivated me. I read a lot of horror and sci-fi in my teens and twenties. Some of it good and some not so good. I’ve always wanted to write. After first wanting to be a paleontologist as a very small child, the next thing I wanted to be was a writer. (Then a baseball player, but I sucked at that.) In high school, I wrote short stories, but most of those were science fiction. Then I got diverted into film making and my fiction … Read More

Zombie Q&A: LC Champlin

Philip HarrisAuthors, Books, Interviews0 Comments

To celebrate the launch of Serial Killer Z, I’ve got a bit of a zombie theme going on for this month and I’ve lined up a series of interviews with a few zombie authors. Today, I’m talking to LC Champlin, author of the first book in the Wolves of the Apocalypse series, Behold Darkness. Hi, tell us about yourself… I started writing when I was old enough to hold a crayon. I’m just as excited about my stories now as back then, but I use multi-syllable words and a word processor now. I write fiction because the characters in my head have too much attitude to stay in my skull, I want to see the world through different eyes, and I need to live life through different souls. My stories are dark and snarky with plenty of action. But don’t think you’re in for a mental junk-food read. The characters force you to answer difficult questions as they negotiate the zompocalypse. Tell us about your book… On a trip to San Francisco, New York businessman Nathan Serebus and his attorney Albin Conrad match wits with the mastermind of a multi-target terrorist attack who unleashes a plague that turns people into mindless cannibals. … Read More

Zombie Q&A: Grivante

Philip HarrisAuthors, Books, Interviews0 Comments

To celebrate the launch of Serial Killer Z, I’ve got a bit of a zombie theme going on for this month and I’ve lined up a series of interviews with a few zombie authors. Today, I’m talking to Grivante, author of The Zee Brothers series. Hi Grivante, tell us about your zombie book… My series is The Zee Brothers: Zombie Exterminators, two brothers trying to keep the zombie apocalypse at bay, one job at a time. Get book 1 at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B013Z3K06W/ or the new boxed set including books 1 & 2 and a bonus story at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B074ZVXY5X/ Why do you write about zombies? I’ve loved them since I was a kid and got hooked on the original Dawn of the Dead movie and the Deadworld series of comic books. What would be the most deadly non-human zombie? This could go one of two ways. Something big and powerful like a Zombear or minuscule like Zom-Ants or other tiny insect. We wouldn’t be able to stay away from them and would have to leave the planet in sterile spaceships to escape them. What’s your favourite zombie videogame? Resident Evil 4 and pretty much any COD Zombies game. Do you prefer fast … Read More

Zombie Q&A: Arthur Mongelli

Philip HarrisAuthors, Books, Interviews1 Comment

To celebrate the launch of Serial Killer Z, I’ve got a bit of a zombie theme going on for this month and I’ve lined up a series of interviews with a few zombie authors. First up is Arthur Mongelli, author of Harvest of Ruin.   Hi, please introduce yourself and your writing… Hi everyone! I’m Arthur Mongelli, author of Harvest of Ruin and the sequel, Harvest of Ruin: The Dead of Winter Tell us about your zombie series… Harvest follows a broad array of survivors as they navigate and struggle to stay alive. The bacterial infection that causes reanimation is as a result of industrial food production and strikes everywhere that receives shipments of frozen meat. The causes are of little consequence to the story, however, as the survivors find themselves in daily struggles to stay alive, keep their loved ones, and in Donner, their community alive. Why do you write about zombies? My obsession with the genre started at a young age. For me, the desire to write about them stemmed from my frustration with a lack of realism in the genre, as well as the story in my head. I also think there is a certain romance in … Read More

UnCommon Minds Q&A: Elizabeth S. Wolf

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My new story, Sitala, has just been published in the UnCommon Minds anthology. To celebrate, I’ve been interviewing some of the authors about their stories. For the last interview, I’m talking to Elizabeth S. Wolf about Lost and Found. What was the inspiration for the uncommon mind in your story? Sounds trite but the opening image really did come to me in a dream. Then when I started to write it down, the voice of the young woman emerged. I often just keep the pen moving. You never know what might come out… What uncommon mind would you like to meet and why? I’d like to meet Rachel Carson. I recently learned that someone I knew long long ago actually supplied some of the research and references for Silent Spring. I also read Rachel’s book Sense of Wonder when I had a young child. It reminded me to slow down and really explore the world of our own backyard. Are there any authors that influenced your story or your writing in general? Natalie Goldberg, Writing Down the Bones. It’s the best book on writing I’ve come across. Shutting down the internal editor and just letting the words flow works for me. Shaping … Read More

UnCommon Minds Q&A: Michael Fountain

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My new story, Sitala, has just been published in the UnCommon Minds anthology. To celebrate, I’m interviewing some of the authors about their stories. Today, I’m talking to Michael Fountain about Buddy Bolden’s Last Stand.   What attracted you to the UnCommon Minds project? The editors’ call for “magical realism”, where I think I belong, though that might be a brown paper bag for people too embarrassed to ask for fantasy. What was the inspiration for the uncommon mind in your story? Ten years as a psychiatric aide and a love of eccentric history, in this case old New Orleans, when Louis Armstrong was a boy soprano and Stalebread Lacombe was in the streets. Which actor would you like to see playing your main character and why? Keith David, because his voice can slide from humor to menace and back again. A great character actor. What do you think the title of the next UnCommon anthology should be? Uncommon Abilities? Uncommon Animals? Come On, Mon: Uncommon Calypso. What are you working on now? Don’t be shy… I have several unpublished novels in constant revision on the inside of my heart: The Fox’s Daughter, a 90,000-word historical fantasy: an Irish witch and her brothers … Read More

UnCommon Minds Q&A: CB Droege

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My new story, Sitala, has just been published in the UnCommon Minds anthology. To celebrate, I’m interviewing some of the authors about their stories. Today, I’m talking to CB Droege  about Mixers. What was the inspiration for the uncommon mind in your story? Whenever anything bad happens to humans, there are always some who are immune. We’re very resilient animals. If our entire society is disassembled from within our minds, there will be the few who make it out undamaged, whether from planning or by chance, and these will all be thrown together to rebuild, whatever differences they might have had before the disaster. So, I was thinking about the inevitability of continued pressure against artists’ abilities to remix and recreate the art of the past, and where that might lead, and how it might go wrong, and who might be left after. What’s the setting for your story? Our own world. It’s already true that most of the policing of copyright infringement, especially on social media, is performed by algorithms, which are not answerable to humans, as anyone who’s tried to dispute a YouTube copyright violation notice already knows. Even major media creators sometimes have trouble posting their own, legal content … Read More

UnCommon Minds Q&A: Christopher Godsoe

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My new story, Sitala, has just been published in the UnCommon Minds anthology. To celebrate, I’m interviewing some of the authors about their stories. Today, I’m talking to Christopher Godsoe about LEGION Protocol. What was the inspiration for the uncommon mind in your story? I’ve always been fascinated by the concepts of artificial intelligence, mind uploading, and the digitizing of human consciousness. I can’t get too much more into it without giving away the plot of the story, but I think those ideas alone could be fodder for hundreds if not thousands of stories. What are you most proud of about the story? Hopefully, that it makes people think. There’s a twist that happens at one point in the story that is meant to encourage the reader to ask themselves some very difficult questions about themselves, and about the nature of life in general. What uncommon mind would you like to meet and why? There are actually three. Nikola Tesla, Albert Einstein, and Alan Turing. I think that the three of them each understood deeper truths to the nature of our reality, and human mortality robbed us of them having the time to answer more of the “big questions”. A big part of what … Read More

UnCommon Minds Q&A: Sara Thompson

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My new story, Sitala, has just been published in the UnCommon Minds anthology. To celebrate, I’m interviewing some of the authors about their stories. Today, I’m talking to Sara Thompson about The Dissertation. What attracted you to the UnCommon Minds project? I had been mulling over a story in my head about a ph.d. student who is writing her paper about a very young and very intelligent serial killer. I was really struggling with how to get the story out on paper as a novel. When I saw a call for submissions to UnCommon Minds, I challenged myself to write this story that was haunting me in a short story format. If nothing else, I would get it on paper and be able to move on with my life. What are you most proud of about the story? This is tough story for me to talk about because I absolutely love it. I’ve put in a few twists and I so desperately want to tell everyone about them but then that would ruin the story. I’m not good with surprises, I pretty much have to do my gift shopping right before the gift giving because it kills me to wait. This made it really … Read More

UnCommon Minds Q&A: Daniel Arthur Smith

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My new story, Sitala, has just been published in the UnCommon Minds anthology. To celebrate, I’m interviewing some of the authors about their stories. Today, I’m talking to Daniel Arthur Smith about The Enemy Beyond the Walls. What attracted you to the UnCommon Minds project? I have long been an avid reader of magical realism and the UnCommon project excels at promoting the genre. What was the inspiration for the uncommon mind in your story? The current dumbing down of our society inspired me to create a world where a child who possesses the knowledge of Trigonometry is unique in her city. What are you most proud of about the story? If I succeeded, the story is an allegory for the dangers of dumbing down and villainizing intellectualism and knowledge experts. If you could merge someone else’s mind with your own, who would you choose and why? My lovely wife as I find grace through her. What uncommon mind would you like to meet and why? I’ve had a recent fascination with Lin Manuel Miranda due to his ability to merge history and allegory into new mediums. What’s the setting for your story? A lone coastal city-state shouldered by the mountains and the … Read More