10 years of AUTUMN

Hard to believe today is the 10 year anniversary of the mass market release of AUTUMN. It had been around for another 10 years prior to that, of course, first as a very basic free download, then as an independent release through Infected Books. I just happened to be on holiday in New York with the family at the time, and I’ll never forget the buzz of walking into Barnes & Noble on 5th Avenue and finding copies on display in the wild (see picture below). It was the beginning of an unforgettable period in my career.

Fast forward a decade, and here I am writing AUTUMN novels again! I thought the series was done and dusted in 2013 with the release of AUTUMN: THE HUMAN CONDITION, but over the last couple of years I found myself thinking more and more about the world of AUTUMN, and I came across a new story I really wanted to tell.

Go back to 2001 when I started sharing AUTUMN online for the first time, and it was a very different world. The Internet was just starting to get its claws into everyday life (and that was part of the reason I started giving the book away for free at the time), but we were nowhere near as reliant on the web and our phones as we are today, and the idea of social media hadn’t yet raised its ugly head. The surviving characters in the first AUTUMN books were isolated from the rest of the world at the exact moment everyone else dropped dead, immediately unable to contact anyone else. No one to ask for help. No one to answer their thousands of questions. Nothing but absolute, unending, suffocating radio silence.

So, how would things be different today? Maybe the last few hours and days before the power dies and the networks fail will be enough time for those desperate survivors to communicate and coordinate? Maybe they’d be able to piece together what was happening from the global population’s dying digital remains?

And there’s another huge difference between the people who survived the AUTUMN epidemic back in 2001 and those who’d make it if the events of the book had taken place in 2020. Zombies! Back in the day, there was an unwritten rule that the people in zombie stories didn’t know what zombies were, but after a couple of decades filled with THE WALKING DEAD and its variations, 28 DAYS LATER, and countless other zombie books, TV series and movies, it seems unlikely that any survivors would now be that naive. They’re going to have more of an idea of what’s going on and how they’re going to have to deal with it, and they certainly wouldn’t be as green as Michael, Carl and the others were in the first scenes of AUTUMN. Maybe that’ll be their undoing, because the living dead in the AUTUMN books certainly don’t play by the same rules as other zombies. It would be wrong to assume and underestimate what they’re capable of…

But I guess the biggest immediate difference between the original series and the new trilogy, is scale. The groups of survivors in the original series were small in number – usually less than 30, hopelessly outnumbered. Not the case for my new characters, who have to deal with the zombie apocalypse in the middle of London. This means there will likely be hundreds of people left alive, but they’ll be surrounded by literally millions of zombies. In the original books you could go for hours without seeing one of the walking dead. This time around, there are hordes of them around every single corner. I’m having a blast writing these new books. The whole trilogy has been scoped out in detail, with the intention of writing and releasing the novels in quick-fire succession during 2021.

So happy birthday, AUTUMN. Here’s to a brand new chapter beginning early next year.

 

 

Hardcode

I’m incredibly excited to announce that CRAIG PATON has agreed to design the covers for the new AUTUMN trilogy I’m currently writing. I couldn’t be happier. Craig has produced some iconic covers for me over the years – TRUST, AUTUMN: THE HUMAN CONDITION, STRAIGHT TO YOU and STRANGERS. Recently, he’s had a huge amount of success with KILLTOPIA – a cyberpunk graphic novel he created alongside writer DAVE COOK.

I’d planned to post here tonight to promote Craig’s new project – HARDCODE – but he’s doing a hell of a job promoting it himself. The recently launched Kickstarter was funded within 6 hours! Stretch targets are now in place, and the support is flooding in. Please check out the Kickstarter embedded below and consider backing Craig’s project.

Click here for more information about HARDCODE.

Free eBook

Just a quick reminder that when you sign up for my mailing list, you can download a free eBook sampler of my work. It’s just been updated to include SCRATCH – my novella from the Infected Books 2016 YEAR OF THE ZOMBIE project – as well as ANGEL, my favourite AUTUMN short story, and THE DEAL which is horrible little tale torn from the pages of THE LAST BIG THING.

Click here or on the cover below for more information. No junk, spam or nonsense, I promise. I generally only send newsletters when there’s a new release on the horizon. And I’m planning several of those for 2021.

Who is that handsome fellow? Why, that’s me on the set of the AUTUMN movie. What a stunner.

Support The Last Survivors

The pandemic has impacted pretty much every aspect of pretty much everyone’s lives. This has been a spiralling, disorientating year for everyone and I don’t know about you, but I think we’ve still got a long, long, long way to go to get back to anything like a semblance of normality.

I’m really missing live events. I watch films and TV shows now and feel a wave of sadness every time I see a crowd. It’s crazy, isn’t it – who’d have ever thought we’d have to spend so much time apart? I’d love to be part of a mass of people again; the collective anticipation of thousands of fans as their favourite band takes the stage, the tribal roar of the supporters when their team puts in a winning performance, hundreds laughing together at a comedian’s jokes, the shared panic as a handful of strangers race through an abandoned nuclear bunker with a pack of bloodthirsty zombies snapping at their heels…

My friends at THE LAST SURVIVORS have been running hugely popular zombie experiences in Essex for almost a decade, and like so many other groups working in the entertainment and creative industries, their business has been decimated as a result of coronavirus. If you’ve not come across them before, have a read of this article from 2012 when my pal Ryan Fleming was dispatched to try their zombie experience for himself.

With almost all of their 2020 events cancelled, THE LAST SURVIVORS are now taking bookings for 2021. You can find full details on their website. If you’re in the area and fancy spending a couple of hours being scared sh*tless in a terrifying Cold War relic, please sign up. The setting is perfect (see here, here and here), and the event is brilliant (don’t take my word for it – check out the Tripadvisor reviews and the stats below).

In the meantime, the team have produced an online experience to tide you through the pandemic. This ties in to the new story the team will be unveiling next year. It’s about an hour long, £9.95 to play, and a huge amount of fun. Play it like I did – lights off and headphones in – for full effect. Click here for more information.

 

An AUTUMN update

Hi everyone. I wanted to give you a quick update on my progress with the new AUTUMN novels. They’re coming along nicely, but I’ve had a couple of major interruptions since I announced them earlier this year (namely the onset of a global pandemic swiftly followed by a heart attack), and it’s become clear that I’m not going to make the October release I’d originally scheduled for AUTUMN: DAWN. Apologies.

Autumn by David Moody - original cover art by Dave Joseph 2005

I’m hoping that AUTUMN: DAWN will now be released in April 2021, with the other books in the new trilogy – INFERNO and EXODUS – following in quick succession. It’s been an absolute blast returning to the world of AUTUMN after nearly a decade away, and though the new books will be very different on a number of levels, the same bleak tone and the overwhelming scale of the apocalypse feels just as it did when I started writing the first book back in 1997. If you’ve not read the original books, you can find a huge amount of information and stacks of free AUTUMN short stories at www.lastoftheliving.net.

Bloody Good Reads

I had a bloody good time talking to bloody Mark Goddard about some bloody good books on the BLOODY GOOD READS podcast. My choices won’t surprise anyone who’s read any interviews with me previously – I AM LEGEND, DAY OF THE TRIFFIDS and DOMAIN. I also got to chat about my past, current and future work – from AUTUMN to HATER to STRANGERS to THE BLEED (taking a brief detour along the way to discuss the merits of the AUTUMN movie).

You can listen to the podcast here. Please support Mark and BLOODY GOOD READS by subscribing to the podcast or following them on Twitter.

THE BLEED: RUPTURE – out today

Today’s the day that the first book in THE BLEED series finally hits the shelves. It’s been a long time since MARK TUFO and CHRIS PHILBROOK invited me to play in the apocalyptic wonderland they were cooking up, and I’m very pleased to have been asked along for the ride. It’s been a blast so far, and I’m really looking forward to seeing where our merry (not really) band of characters end up.

This is an apocalypse like no other, and now we get to share it! THE BLEED: RUPTURE is out today.

The Bleed: Rupture by David Moody, Chris Philbrook and Mark Tufo

The Bleed: Filthy Halfsies

Less than a week to go until THE BLEED: RUPTURE is released. Here’s a glimpse into the third and final story strand…

When the grandfathers to the grandfathers were young, the race of gods stepped through time and space, appearing in the North. Fleeing an ancient, world-eating evil they called the Bleed, they came to build anew, in peace. Other than strange hair and eye colors, they appeared similar to normal human beings—but they were taller, stronger, and smarter, and were ripe with powers from their home world. They brought unheard of learning and experience with them; they built their Endless City from one edge of the North to the other, with its mile-high walls and towers of stone, steel and wood soaring above that. They ruled the world from afar, without war, or even effort, ever watchful for the signs of the Bleed, their unending, ever-hungry foe.

They took husbands and wives and left thousands of half-breed children behind when the enemy they fled bled through the fabric of the worlds. Deep in their city, servants of the evil ate at their new home, one bloody soul at a time. They made their stand at the edge of the world, almost a score ago, and not one god has been seen since.

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One week until we start Bleeding

A week today will see THE BLEED: RUPTURE hitting the shelves as an AUDIBLE EXCLUSIVE as well as a paperback and ebook. I have two BLEED-related things to share with you today. First, some very kind words about book one from my good friend, CRAIG DILOUIE:

“From three of apocalyptic fiction’s most innovative authors, THE BLEED series pits humanity against an infectious, all-consuming evil in stories packed with great characters, interesting ideas, and plenty of good end-of-the-world fun.”

And here for your pleasure, because you can’t have too much of a bleeding good thing, is the cover for book 2. RAPTURE is due in March 2021.

THE BLEED: RUPTURE, written by CHRIS PHILBROOK, MARK TUFO and I is released on 14 July as an ebook, paperback, and Audible exclusive audiobook narrated by SCOTT AIELLO.

The Bleed: The Moon

The first book in THE BLEED trilogy – RUPTURE –  written by CHRIS PHILBROOKMARK TUFO and myself, is released on 14 July. Here’s an introduction to the second story strand which takes place on the moon.

Base Station New Start, Sea of Crises, Earth’s Moon Surface

It was 2035, the year the earth came to a tipping point it could not recover from. Deforestation, pollution, melting of the polar ice caps, overpopulation, and an inability to provide enough food had pushed the world into a war that dwarfed the two great wars combined. Nearly every country that had a standing military had joined the fray, battling for scraps of an ever-diminishing supply of resources. Alliances were tested, broken and reformed on a continual basis. It got to the point that most didn’t even know which side, or who exactly, they were fighting with anymore. Humanity was on the brink of extinction, and somehow killing each other seemed the best solution. For twelve years, unbridled savagery was released upon the planet. Billions died in the conflict, and there seemed no end to the misery. War and the wretchedness of it were all anybody knew.

It was a French woman, Esmee Marchand, who had covertly approached what remained of the governments with a plan to save what was left. Esmee had been an ecologist; she’d studied at Harvard and Cambridge University before the war started. She bore witness to the destruction of her planet and had switched her field of focus to terra-forming. She’d devised an original method of rejuvenating environments; creating safe zones for human life, and with this knowledge in hand, she had offered an escape, a fresh start. So, even as countries tore themselves and each other apart, scientists and technicians worked in secret to create rockets and gather the materials, people and animals that would inhabit the moon, always with hope that someday they could return to the earth, once peace had been restored and the threats facing our survival had been removed. What they did not know, what they could not know, was that the Bleed had found their oasis among the stars, and it was doing what it had always done: destroy.

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