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Why Not Zombies?

What follows is a guest post from Leah Rhyne, a fellow writer. Not just any writer, but a writer of science fiction and horror. And, more appropriately, zombies! Leah and I hooked up via Twitter and I took a look at her blog and was instantly hooked. She has a style of writing that pulls you in and conveys emotions wonderfully. Read her post below to sample what I’m talking about, then check out her blog to get an even better example. It’s not about zombies, per se, but a glimpse into an ordinary life made fascinating by the way she portrays it.

Oh, and another funny story about Leah: while discussing blog swapping I made mention of the weekend I had that involved a freak stabbing injury, a lot of blood, and a trip the urgent care to get stitches sans anesthetic. For being a horror and zombie writer, she confessed that the mere thoughts of stitches turns her squeamish and send her rushing to hide under her bed. It’s these little quirks that make people so darn fascinating! And now for Leah’s guest post:

It’s happened more than once. In fact, I’d say it’s happened a dozen times.

A person learns I’m a writer, that I have a book out. Their face lights up, and they say, “Oh? What’s it about?”

I grin. “It’s a mix of sci-fi and horror. And, you know, zombies.”

The face darkens, and they give me a quick once over.

Dirty blond hair, blue eyes, goofy smile. Most of the time accompanied by my spunky little four-year-old daughter.

“But you don’t look like a horror writer. Why do you write about…zombies?”

They say it like it’s a curse-word, like it’s something dirty, in a hushed voice so that no one else will overhear our illicit conversation.

I have a hundred answers to pull from, but here’s my favorite:

Why not zombies? Why not write about the end of society as we know it? It feels pretty close these days, right? Nuclear weapons in the Middle East.Mega-hurricanes and tsunamis wiping out entire cities. Bird-flu, SARS and Ebola.

Why not zombies? At least we know they’re not real…or are they?

Zombies allow me to look at what really interests me: people. I’m a student of history first, a fan of horror second. And history dictates: people have treated each other terribly throughout time. Slavery. Genocide. Mass suicides.

How much would it take for the average Joe to turn on his neighbor and put a bullet through is face? How much would it take for a deranged man to gain a huge, devoted following, and use his power to exterminate those who oppose him.

So, why not zombies? These are the questions that interest me, and zombies give me a way to explore, to play, in a way I hope real life won’t.

And also…finding new ways to dismantle the undead is pretty fun, too.

If you’d like to learn more, please check out:

Zombie Days Undead Nights, by Leah Rhyne

Zombie Days, Campfire Nights: Book One in the Undead America Series

The book trailer

Leah Rhyne, with a zombieMy web site

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  1. November 7, 2012 at 08:20

    Thanks for hosting me, Jason!! And…hey, man, you aired my little “stitches gross me out” secret! I’m s’posed to be big and bad and tough!! hahahahaaa 🙂

    • November 7, 2012 at 08:27

      Nonsense! Stuff like that is gold. It’s like a sadomasochistic that can’t handle the smell of leather. Okay, so maybe that was a bad comparison…

  2. November 8, 2012 at 15:15

    To each his own, I guess. A lot of people love zombies, so those nay-sayers just mean they’re not your audience 🙂

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