With the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour officially half over, we’re continuing our series of interviews with each of the authors on the tour. Up next is Kirk Allmond. For those of you that haven’t heard of Kirk or his work, let’s take a few moments and get everyone acquainted…
Kirk Allmond takes on all aspects of zombies. This isn’t just a vocation, it’s a passion. In 2006, The Zombie Preparedness Initiative was formed as a global project to prepare the world for the inevitable zombie apocalypse. Or, whatever disaster may occur. The Zombie Preparedness Initiative, or ZPI, is unique in that it connects zombie literature, survivalism, and a dash of humor. The site provides a useful service with wit and wisdom.
On the site, there’s an article about creating a zombie plan. The article is a thoughtful and thorough discussion of what an ordinary person should learn about being prepared for any emergency or disaster, not just a plan for when the dead walk the earth. Alongside this article are postings about gardening and food preservation, including the all-important topic “How to Make Bacon Post Apocalypse”, weaponry and supplies.
Kirk didn’t write all the articles, and gives the majority of the credit to his Advisory Board, a group of writers, survivalists, and zombie enthusiasts who oversee the content of the site. Many ideas are contributed by members of the large community of readers, who also participate in the discussion forums.
Allmond’s novels, the What Zombies Fear series are co-authored with Laura Bretz. What Zombies Fear: A Father’s Quest has reached the number one spot on Amazon’s Horror, Paranormal, and Superhero best seller lists. In addition to the books in the WZF universe, Allmond and Bretz also publish a serial called Will of the Dead, a completely different, much darker take on the Zombie Apocalypse.
You can follow Kirk on his blog www.kirkallmond.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/WhatZombiesFear
Welcome Kirk. Why Zombies? Is there anything specific that draws you to the genre?
I believe that zombies are humanities great equalizer. There is something exciting to me about a world without the rule of law, where each man thrives or fails on his own merit. It’s an enticing thought. Living in a world where hard work is currency and your reputation and deeds define you, rather than your possessions.
Tell us about your latest project.
The 5th book in the What Zombies Fear series, Declaration of War is available now, with the 6th and final book, The Incarnation, due out sometime in late summer 2013.
What makes your Zombies different, if anything?
All zombie authors face the same basic trouble. Once your main character has faced a single zombie several times, how do you keep it frightening? How do you keep the thrills going? Rather than continuing to throw more and more zombies at the hero, I chose to make some zombies smarter, faster, or stronger than others. Some of the zombies in What Zombies Fear are very different than typical “Romero” style zombies. Of course, the majority of them are the rotting, shambling, flesh hungry type. That’s what makes it so frightening to me. Somewhere, hiding in those brainless flesh eating monsters is a clever, fast flesh eating monster.
Is there a Zombie novel that has influenced you more than any other? If so, what is it and why?
So many to count! Of course, I read voraciously, I’m not just a zombie author, I’m a huge fan of the genre. I always have to send a shout out to my friend and fellow zombie author Mark Clodi.
What are your top 3 favourite Zombie films?
Zombieland and Shaun of the Dead, I love the mix of humor and horror. I also have to give props to The Zombfather, George A. Romero, without whom none of us would be doing what we love. However, those answers are kind of “pat”, so I’ll also add some more obscure zombie films. I loved G.M.O. Extinction, World of the Dead, and Zombie Diaries 2 are fantastic low budget zombie films.
Thanks for the recommendations of lower budget films! Do you think the popularity of The Walking Dead and its appearance in mainstream media has helped to increase the popularity of the genre, or has there always been such an interest?
It think that without the popularity there wouldn’t be a Walking Dead tv show. I think it’s much more likely that the current global social and economic climate has more to do with their popularity.
As we all know, music and slaying the Undead go hand in hand. Given these headings, what would be your Soundtrack to the Zombie Apocalypse?
1. Overall theme for the Apocalypse: Something soaring, since JJ Abrams is directing my zombie apocalypse, it would probably be something by Hans Zimmer.
2. What plays when I kill my first zombie: Something by System of a Down, but NOT Down With The Sickness, because it’s so overdone.
3. What plays when you’re chased by the horde: Anything by YingYang Twins. It’s good running music.
4. When you have to kill a loved one: Fix You by Coldplay
5. When you find a group of survivors: Black Eyed Peas’, Good Night
6. Meeting a new love interest: Nine Inch Nails: Animal
7. Making a Final Stand: Eye of the Tiger by Survivor
8. You’ve survived it all: Destiny’s Child’s Survivor
9. Then you discover a bite mark: Mad World by Gary Jules
10. End Credits: Love Bites by Def Leppard
Pop Quiz: If the Zombie Apocalypse were to occur right now, 5 things found in the room you are currently sitting will be your weapons – what are they?
I own a website called The Zombie Preparedness Initiative. Our aim is to make sure that the entire world is prepared for the inevitable zombie apocalypse. Sitting six feet from me is my bug out bag, and on the shelf above is my shotgun, two pistols, a machete and a pair of fighting batons. That’s kind of cheating though, so in the spirit of the question I’ll say, nail clippers, a paring knife, a long flat bladed screwdriver, a TV tray folding table, and an Xbox controller. I think I’d last at least 18 minutes.
You’ll probably survive, but only time will tell Kirk… Now let’s take a look at Kirk’s latest release with co-author Laura Bretz – What Zombies Fear: Declaration of War…
In this 5th book in the What Zombies Fear Series, Victor makes it back from California, but not after suffering some heavy setbacks. The team he has worked so hard to build is fractured. Just when things have started to calm down, Max learns some startling information, and overnight, things go from not so bad, to a Declaration of War.
Don’t forget that clicking on the cover will take you straight to Amazon!
Thank you Kirk for taking the time to answer my questions. If you’d like to connect with Kirk, you can find him on his website, Facebook, his Amazon Author Page, or on Twitter.