Today I’m pleased to feature an interview with Chris Philbrook, author of Adrian’s Undead Diary. Before we get to the questions, let’s get to know Chris a little better…
I am the creator and author of A Dragon Among Us as well as Elmoryn and Adrian’s Undead Diary. Elmoryn is a decade old game setting and system I developed for commercial sale and development that I am now sharing on the internet, and through the publication of The Kinless Trilogy. As the books set in the Elmoryn universe are released, hopefully interest in the game will grow as well, and that side of Elmoryn will come to light.
A Dragon Among Us was inspired by decade old Role Playing sessions with my friend Alan MacRaffen, and has been percolating ever since. It’s currently online, and once completed will be farmed into publishing. Not sure if I’ll submit it to a big house, or keep it my own. Time will tell.
Adrian’s Undead Diary is my mammoth zombie epic that more than likely brought you here. Originally published online AUD grew to almost 10,000 active registered users before I decided to publish it. Adrian Ring’s story of survival and humanity in a world gone mad has been critically acclaimed and been an unbelievable success online, so seeing what it’ll do in print is exciting for me.
I’m also the owner of Tier One Games LLC, my old game development company. If you buy something from AUD, Elmoryn, or A Dragon Among Us, you’ll likely see the sale credited to Tier One Games. Don’t worry, it’s legit.
I’ve gone to a LOT of college. I’ve got a Business degree as well as a Psychology degree, and I’ve done the full program at the school of hard knocks. I’ve been a printing press operator, bouncer, purchasing agent, bodyguard, customer service representative, mental health counselor, and more. I can write about weird shit because I’ve done weird shit. Trust me.
I call the wonderful state of New Hampshire my home, but I love to travel. I love to read, write, play role playing games, miniatures games, video games, and Magic: The Gathering. When I find the time to be active, I like to hike, play basketball, and play football. I’ve got a lovely girlfriend right now, and two Devon Rex cats, Gilbert and Marvin.
And now it’s time for the questions. First up, tell us about your zombies? If the dead were to rise, do you think you’d stand a chance against them?
Ah, the quality of the dead. That’s the real question isn’t it? It establishes all the rules of the game. How hard would it be to survive, what skills are relevant? Can I walk, or must I run? The undead (and they are dead, very dead) in Adrian’s Undead Diary are slow shamblers. Think very Romero movie, and you’re in the ballpark. My zombies have a fairly unique trait as well: They are entirely silent save for the sounds of their shuffling feet, or when they bump into things. They don’t moan, speak, or breathe in any way. They’re like sharks, circling, closing in, biting and tearing until you’re dead.
What was your first experience with zombie media (movie, book, comic, etc)? Was that experience what drew you into writing the genre?
Easily the first was an old VHS copy of Night of the Living Dead I talked my mother into buying me at an old Ames department store. I watched that tape until it disintegrated and took a VCR with it. I don’t think that single movie experience moved me into writing, but meeting George twenty years later surely was the experience that sealed the deal.
Pop Quiz: The item to your left is your only weapon during the Zombie Apocalypse. What is it and what do you think are your chances at survival?
Hm. My cellphone is immediately to my left, and to my right is my cat Marvin. I’m not sure which one would be more useful. If the cell networks are still operational… I’d go with Marvin. He’s an awesome cat.
You’re going to use your cat as a weapon? Not sure how I feel about that… List your 5 (five) favourite pieces of Zombie media.
Five top zombie media things. In no particular order, I’d say the following: Romero’s original zombie movie trilogy (Gonna count that as one item, because I tend to watch them right in a row), The Walking Dead books, Return of the Living Dead, World War Z, and probably Patient Zero.
We all know that we sometimes have bad luck. Keeping that in mind, what song do you think would get stuck in your head, playing over and over again on an incessant loop?
Lady Gaga, Paparazzi. AUD fans will clearly know what I’m talking about.
Well for those of us who haven’t read Adrian’s Undead Diary, we’ll just remain in the dark about it. I suppose we could all check out the book though, right?
Adrian Ring’s simple life is thrown into chaos when the world is ripped apart by a plague of undead and legions of desperate survivors. Retreating to Auburn Lake Preparatory Academy, Adrian attempts to rescue friends and family on the way while dancing around his impending insanity over who and what he left behind, and evading maniac survivors. He saves his cat Otis, but shoots his mom. Pretty successful, all things considered.
Dark Recollections is the first part of Adrian’s own story of how he survived after “That Day.” Told through his eyes as he talks to his laptop, affectionately named ‘Mr. Journal,” and through short stories that entwine with his tales that bring forth dark visions of a world being eaten alive by an unimaginable evil. Adrian’s Undead Diary is an eight part epic about a solitary, guilt stricken man that didn’t think he deserved to live, but realizes very soon that he survived, and suffered for a reason.