This is a quick post to publicly thank Zombie Ed and everyone involved in the UK Festival of Zombie Culture last Saturday. As always it was an excellent event: a gracious host (Ed), the usual suspects (myself, Wayne Simmons, Adam Millard and Sean T Page), loads of great traders (the Zombie Shop team) and staff, and about 500 rabid fans all crammed into the Phoenix arts centre in Leicester to watch a marathon thirteen hours of zombie movies (click here to see what you missed).
Since I started writing zombie books we’ve become overrun by the living dead. Back then there only seemed to be me, Brian Keene, David Wellington and a handful of others doing anything with zombies, but over the course of the last decade our undead friends have shuffled out from the fringes of horror to take up their current position right in the middle of the mainstream. In some respects that’s great, but I’ve been increasingly worried that zombie fatigue will soon start setting in. On the basis of what I saw in Leicester this weekend, we’ve got absolutely nothing to worry about.
A picture tells a thousand words they say, so I’ll save myself some typing and let these excellent photographs from the very talented Grace Elkin do all the talking instead. You can see the rest of her pictures here.
Make sure you’re signed up to receive the Zombie Times (click here if you’re not signed up already), and do yourself a favour: when tickets for the 2014 event go on sale, get in quick. This is an annual event that no self-respecting zombie fan can afford to miss. Special thanks, as always, must go to the man in the first photo below: the driving force behind the festival and the Zombie Times, the one and only Zombie Ed.
If you read my post earlier this week from Grimmfest, you’ll know how much I enjoyed STALLED, a great new British zombie movie. I couldn’t find any release dates (other than VOD in the US from 20 October), but I wanted to give you a heads up so if you see the film showing anywhere, you can make sure you catch it.
Zombie movies are, as we all know by now, easy to get wrong. There’s a tendacy to veer towards clichés and gore at the expense of the story (though I accept there are a huge number of folks who just want clichés and gore…). To my mind, the same is true of both straight-laced zombie movies and comedies (I refuse to call them zomedies, though lots of people apparently do). Okay, so you can have a laugh finding endless gruesome, slapstick ways to get rid of the undead (I’m looking at you here, Zombieland), but I think all zombie stories, whether being played for laughs or not, need a solid plot and characters you give a damn about to succeed.
I’ll be honest, I went into STALLED thinking I was going to hate it, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. Watch the trailer then hit the link to read more.
Today sees the launch in the UK of two new AUTUMN releases from Gollancz. First up is THE COMPLETE AUTUMN – an ebook only collection of the five AUTUMN novels (Autumn, The City, Purification, Disintegration and Aftermath) available in all major formats: Kindle / iBook / Nook / Kobo / ePub (Waterstones) / ePub (Hive). A great way to get into the series if you haven’t yet read the books. And don’t forget, for full completeness you can also pick up THE HUMAN CONDITION for the bargain price of £1.99!
Same content really, just given a fresh coat of paint and a better address in readiness for the new books (and more regular updates) which will soon be forthcoming. I thought I’d take this opportunity to let you know how the new novels stand…
Is with a crack team of beta-readers, who are currently beta-reading. I’m nervously awaiting their feedback…
STRAIGHT TO YOU
I’m well into the second draft, and on course to have this new version of my debut novel ready for January 2014 (terrifyingly, that’ll be twenty years since I started work on the original book).
Revamped, revitalised, and ready to start rewriting. The target is to have the book finished by the end of October.
Proof of work being done… on my office floor from left to right, 17 DAYS, STRANGERS, STRAIGHT TO YOU
I always find it difficult to keep this site updated over the summer. I have a large family, and with the kids on holiday from school and university, finding time to work becomes frustratingly hard. Writing has to take precedence, so the website and Facebook, Twitter etc. inevitably suffer. The girls are all just about back studying now, so expect to hear from me more regularly again.
A little advance warning: the free online versions of TRUST will shortly disappear. At the moment you can read the entire novel at www.trustdavidmoody.com and Wattpad, but I’ll be removing the last third or so of the book from these sites at the beginning of August. Why? A couple of reasons, actually.
First, as I’ve already revealed, I’ll be serialising the brand new version of STRAIGHT TO YOU from late summer onwards. The reality of life as a writer at the moment is that I can’t afford to give away as much of my work as I’d like. My kids are a demanding lot. They’re always after something… food, clothes, a roof over their heads, those kinds of things! Over the years I think I must have given away upwards of a million free books, and there are plenty more to come, so I can’t be accused of being stingy.
Second, I’m planning to try a few new things with TRUST, which I’ll tell you more about in due course. I won’t be able to judge the success of these initiatives if the free versions remain available.
The full delivery is expected from the printer early next week, and pre-ordered books will be dispatched by 28 June.
I need to make an apology to those people who’ve already pre-ordered the limited edition – it seems the confirmation emails didn’t go out as expected. I’ll get that sorted as a matter of urgency. If you’ve received a Paypal receipt, then we’ve got your order and your book is secure.
An odd title for a post, but I think it’ll make sense in the end. Bear with me. And bear with me also because this is likely to be a longer and more personal ramble than usual (though there’ll be a book-related announcement later, so it’s worth sticking with me to the bitter end).
I’ve been relatively quiet (for me) recently, and I’ve already explained why – I’m working on a number of different projects which I hope will see the light of day over the next year or so. I talked about a few of them recently.
When you’re not spending as much time online talking to people as you’d like, it’s easy to lose a little focus and to start to doubt anyone is still listening. I’ve spent a lot of time recently thinking about my career – how far I’ve come, how far I want to go, and how I intend on getting there. There’s no great plan or roadmap and there never has been. I just do what feels right at the time, and I hope people like it. It’s those people I want to talk about today. As you’re reading this, that means you!
A few weekends back I had a couple of great experiences which helped put a lot of things in perspective. The first took place over three nights in Wolverhampton. If I mention the band Marillion, I generally expect one of two usual reactions: many folk in the UK usually say ‘ah yes, Kayleigh!’, and many folk outside the UK usually say ‘What? Who?’
For those who don’t know, Marillion are a unique band who, for more than twenty-five years, have produced some exceptional music. I got into them in the early 1990’s and have slavishly lapped up every release as well as seeing them live almost thirty times. They might not be to your tastes, but give them a whirl. You can take a crash course here (click here if the widget below’s not working or, if you’re new to the band, visit this page and get a free CD sent your way):
I’m sure many of you have heard of Sean Page – best-selling author and head-honcho at the Ministry of Zombies. Sean’s a lovely guy who works tirelessly to educate the masses about the very real dangers of the impending zombie apocalypse. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting him on a number of occasions and I can say with real certainty that he’d make a vital member of your survival team when the shit hits the fan.
So what do you get when you add Sean Page to the nuclear bunker? I’ll tell you – you get the Omega Man Project.
Starting tomorrow, Sean will seal himself into the lower levels of the bunker where he’ll remain in isolation for a week. His only contact with the rest of the world will be by way of a daily video/blog post at www.ministryofzombies.com. I urge you all to follow this brave hero as he attempts to recreate the aftereffects of an I AM LEGEND type viral apocalypse.
Another cracking THIS IS HORROR event! I had a great time in Edinburgh on Saturday, talking horror and reading a brand new AUTUMN short story to a very appreciative crowd.
Writing, by its nature, can be a very solitary vocation, and it’s easy to lose the connection between author and reader. Doing these events always reminds me what a great job I have. There’s nothing quite like reading a fresh, untested piece of work to a crowd of folks and getting the kind of reaction you hoped for. And that reaction doesn’t come via email, Facebook or Twitter: it’s immediate and genuine. As I mentioned in a recent post, I’ve had a last flurry of AUTUMN activity and have been writing a few final short stories. After making that post and announcing the contents of the new edition of AUTUMN: THE HUMAN CONDITION a week or so back, I went on to write a couple more shorts and one of them, ANGEL, is a piece I’m very, very proud of.
Although numbers weren’t quite what we expected on Saturday, and even though Gary McMahon was unable to be there, Jasper Bark, Joseph D’Lacey and I had a brilliant time. Joseph was there to launch his excellent new fantasy tome, BLACK FEATHERS, which is out this week, and which you can find more about here and here. And Jasper was there just… well, just being Jasper, really. I think the photograph below (pinched from Jim Mcleod – hope that’s okay, Jim!) explains everything. After being asked nicely to read something that wasn’t too crude and full of obscenities (as we were in the middle of a busy bookshop on a Saturday afternoon), Jasper read from his book WAY OF THE BAREFOOT ZOMBIE. If you have it, turn to page 258 and start reading. It’ll explain mine and Joseph’s expressions…
Huge thanks to all at This is Horror and Blackwells for making the event happen and making it such a success. Particular thanks to Ellie Wixon, and to all those who came to listen to us, including David McDonald, Iain McKinnon, and The Ginger Nuts of Horror himself, Jim Mcleod.
Lots of stuff going on behind the scenes to get the limited edition hardcover of AUTUMN: AFTERMATH and the new, expanded edition of AUTUMN: THE HUMAN CONDITION published. Prices and release dates will be announced in the coming weeks, but today I thought I’d share the contents of THE HUMAN CONDITION with you. It’s turned into a monster – almost 40,000 words longer than the original edition.
The book will be available as an eBook, trade paperback and limited edition hardcover in May from Infected Books. Click here to register your interest (with absolutely no obligation) and click the link below to find out more about the book – the very last piece of the AUTUMN story. Continue reading
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