Is this how David Cameron would look as a zombie?

In The Restless Dead, David Cameron gets attacked by a political rival, which stuns everyone. Well, the rival politician did die the day before.

This is how I reckon Cameron would look as a zombie.


What other delights are in The Restless Dead?

1- there's a zombie snowman - somehow you know he won't be content with just a carrot.

2- there's a zombie vixen who wants to get down and dirty with one of the main characters. Who said it was just brains on a zombie's mind?

3-there's a unique way to disorientate these zombies.

4-there's a homage to Dawn of the Dead when the gang end up at a shopping mall.

5-there's also some comedy. What? In a zombie novel? Well, yes. Scots have a unique way to dealing with things - usually using black humour.


Can bagpipes help them survive the undead hordes? 
Read the book to find out.


Meet the zombie insects

Midges play a prominent role in Scottish zombie novel Dead Bastards, but outside of Scotland little is know about these blood sucking insects.

A cloud of midges like the ones in Dead Bastards
Here are 5 things you probably didn’t know about midges –

1. Midges are microscopic insects that are barely visible to the human eye. You usually only see them because they hunt in packs and you see the black cloud as you walk by them, or if you’re very unlucky, they come towards you.


2. Midges are also referred to as midgies.


3. Although people might call midges Highland midges, these insects are found all over Scotland, particularly in warm, humid weather conditions and they love the countryside, particularly woodland.


4. Midges are resistant to all insecticides, although there are some sprays that do deter them but don’t stop them biting completely.


5. Unlike mosquitoes, midges don’t carry malaria. In fact, apart from their bites that get itchy, they are relevantly harmless. At least at the moment…


I won't tell you how, but these beasties play a part in Dead Bastards. Available now on Amazon.


Paperback


Kindle 




Have yourself a zombie Christmas








To celebrate the release of my zombie novel The Restless Dead, I thought it'd be fun to look at the zombie-themed Christmas gifts for that special someone in your life.

Make your own zombie movie
We can all do better, or at least we think we can. So, why not give making your own zombie movie a go with this neat piece of kit?

How do you do it? Well, this is what it says in the blurb -
"Create movie magic in your very own film studio with this Make-Your-Own Zombie Movie Kit. The Make-Your-Own Zombie Movie Kit contains a film backdrop and all the characters and props you could want in order to make your cinematic masterpiece. Once you've come up with a plot, record your movie using a smartphone or camera and upload it to the internet. Add special effects using apps and imaginative props to make your movie really stand out."
Zombie Christmas cards  
There's a range of zombie Christmas cards out there too. Here's one of the best ones I've found. This one is available at shop.cafepress.co.uk They have a page dedicated to zombie stuff.



Zombie cupcakes
These days, baking is all the rage. So, why not combine the love of zombies with cakes?

This little book is available on Amazon.com and .co.uk and the good thing is its not too scary for kids.





Slippers
We'll all get slippers this year (again), but that doesn't mean they need to be boring. Slippers just got zombied.


Zombie BFF
How about this different take on friendship necklaces with each person getting half a brain? I found this one at thinkgeek.com



Get The Restless Dead - its been described as "Shaun of the Dead Meets The Walking Dead."



Stay tuned for even more zombie gift ideas...



Things to do until The Walking Dead returns


This is what we feel like doing 

We hate waiting and when we're waiting for The Walking Dead to return, that goes double.

So, what can we do to pass away the time, as we suffer from Rick, Daryl, Michonne and zombie withdrawal symptoms?

Well, we could plan our own Walking Dead party...stay tuned, details coming soon, including the Daryl/Rick drinking game...

But, while we're waiting we could while away the days by doing the following -

Get Rick's shirt. I found this one on ebay.

1. Dress like Rick Grimes or Daryl Dixon. Or, if you can't get someone else to and stand behind them.
These aren't bread sticks, these are are katanas like the sword Michonne wields.













2.Go around your local big store pretending the baguette bread sticks are a katana like Michonne's and practice chopping folk's heads off. If anyone says anything, tut and say "zombie," like that explains everything.

Zombie checkpoint sign.

3. Set up a zombie checkpoint outside your local shopping mall/school and stop folk asking to see their arms and ankles. If anyone asks why, say, "I need to check if you've been bitten."



Stage your own zombie battle.

4. Have a zombie battle in the forest using plastic toy guns and swords. Do not do this in an area where they all look like Daryl and have crossbows.


Freak out your workmates by saying you've been bitten.

5. Turn up at work/school/a family party with ripped clothes, covered in fake blood (get one of those fake blood capsules) with scratches and bites and say, "I've been bitten. These guys came out of nowhere and started eating the guy who was with me. Never seen anything like it. Better sit down, I feel faint."





6. Put up makeshift signs around town with crude drawings saying things like "ZOMBIES - STEER CLEAR OF THE INFECTED" and "ZOMBIE VIRUS - STAY AWAY."

Or, you could always watch The Walking Dead marathon this weekend. But, hey, that doesn't mean you can't do all the other stuff as well.





7. Read this zombie novel.
Zombies in the snow.
No guns.
A ragtag of survivors battle with each other and the dead bastards to survive.

Write your own Walking Dead

Get your teeth into writing a zombie novel


I never expected to be able to write a zombie novel. I thought horror was best left to three of my favourite authors – Shaun Hutson, James Herbert and Graeme Masterton.

Then this image came into my head of a couple lying in bed when there’s a knock at the door. One of them pads down the hall, opens the door and finds his friend Archie standing there. Archie looks like he’s been mugged. Then they notice that his insides are dripping out…

And so The Restless Dead was born. So called because the zombies are dead and a bastard to kill (a Glasgow phrase for difficult).

Along the way I’ve learnt a few things -

1. Don’t concentrate on too many people’s stories.
This is a big mistake. Too many characters and too many stories distance the reader from the story you are trying to tell. You want to being everybody into the world you've created. 

2. Respect the genre. 
When it’s a genre that people are well acquainted with like zombies, you need to stick to the rules. By all means push the limits. I recently read a book by a well known author who gave one of his zombies the gift of thought. Bad enough, but he also gave them the cloak of invisibility. I threw that book across the room in a hissy fit. 

3. Make your characters distinctive.
People should know who’s speaking even without speech tags. This is tricky to do. 

4. Every step of the way, your characters must have a goal.
Simply surviving isn't enough. Just look at The Walking Dead. They always have a goal, whether it's to get revenge, find the rest of the group or help take Eugene to Washington because he says he has a cure.

For instance, in The Restless Dead they had to go to a shopping mall for supplies. There was no way out of it. Having goals creates conflict and brings your characters to life. Put your characters into a situation and see how they get out of it. 



5. Don’t do what writers of The Walking Dead’s did and get too bogged down with one aspect of your plot.
In the case of the hit show, they dwelled too much on the Lori, Shane and Rick love triangle. In the end, I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who got bored with it. If I wanted that kind of storyline, I'd watch a soap opera. 

In a zombie novel, the zombies must be king. 







Now for the zombies

Now yo've got the book sorted, it's time to think about what kind of zombies you'll have? 
Will it be the shufflers or the runners?

Will they be smarter zombies or the standard slow kind? 


Choose wisely, then run (or shuffle) with it.


Remember, it's your story and nobody can tell it like you can:) 



Why not check out my zombie novel? 

The Restless Dead is is available -
Amazon.com 
Amazon.uk
Amazon.ca 

Check out the cover. It's pretty cool and is actually a scene from the book.






And available as an eBook from Amazon (not sure that I approve as an ereader isn't going to be much use against zombies, whereas a book comes in handy) - 



Where's The Walking Dead's Beth? - some theories


Daryl says, "You can come out now."

So, who is the mysterious person/people in the woods? 

This is what I think - 

Beth appears with half a dozen other young women. They're all in various stages of pregnancy. They've been held at a hospital run by a mad scientist who want to repopulate the post-apocalyptic world and who forcibly impregnated all the girls with donor sperm. 



Or,
Beth & Co have been used to test a vaccine to see if the infected can be uninfected.

What do you think?

Where is Beth? 

What's happened to her? 

We'll find out the truth on November 2nd in Slabdown (we hope). 

Why Rick Grimes will shave off his beard (we hope)

CRAZY BEARD MAN

Crazy beard man.

As well as not wanting to look like the crazy man who he let out of the old railway carriage (who promptly got eaten), there's one reason why Rick Grimes will shave his beard - bearded men don't do well on The Walking Dead.

Don't believe me? Just ask these guys.


JIM


Jim was left to die against a tree at his own request after being bitten. Maybe he should have shaved. 

DALE 
Daryl had to end poor Dale. 

Dale was walking along the quiet fields of Hershel’s farm, when he was bitten by a roaming zombie and had to be put out of misery by Daryl Dixon. Ironically, Carl Grimes had been taunting the walker earlier.



Trusting Shane can seriously ruin your chances of staying alive.







OTIS 
Otis was collecting medical supplies for Carl, when he and Shane were confronted by a gang of walkers. Shane thinks how do I get out of this and decides to use Otis as a diversion. He shoots him in the leg, leaving him to be devoured by walkers.

Baddie Tomas gave him a few whacks to the head.

 






BIG TINY



At the prison, Big Tiny was scratched by a walker while clearing out the cell block and fellow convict Tomas who repeatedly smashed his head in with a crowbar.

Hershell will be missed.








HERSHELL

When the Governor cut off Hershel's head with a sword, we wept.



JOE FROM THE CLAIMERS

Pulling a gun on Rick was a bad idea, as was not getting a shave.
 Joe from The Claimers got what he deserved.
Rick ripped his throat out, we cheered. 



The 5 top moments from The Walking Dead Premier (Season 5)




Wow, what can you say. The Walking Dead kicked off with a rollercoaster episode that left us breathless for more. The show had everything.

Here's my top 5 moments -

"I'm gonna kill people."

1. Carol going all Rambo.
From when she left Tyreese and Judith and headed for Terminus with some firecrackers in her rucksack and a seriously bad attitude and the parting words, "I'm gonna kill people." Was there ever any doubt that she would save them all?

She created the explosion that saved Glenn, Rick, Bob and Daryl from having their throats slit and drained into a trough in the Terminal's and triggered everybody's escape from Terminus.
Arguably Carol is the toughest character on the show. She did what had to be done with Lizzy. You could say the same for David and Karen.

The transformation of battered housewife and grieving mother is complete. Carol could well be the last person standing in The Walking Dead.


"Cross any of these people, you kill ‘em. Don’t hesitate…they won’t.”
"They don't get to live."

2. Rick Grimes going all Die Hard
Show them mercy? Screw that. They did screw with the wrong people and Rick vowed that none of them would be left standing.

Not that we'd disagree. They left Woodbury be and look what happened. Hershel died, he almost lost everybody.

A new Rick is emerging and you don't want to screw with him.

He's going to be ruthless because he has to be.



3. Tyreese crashing back into that cabin and killing the I'm gonna kill Judith guy, leaving a trail of dead walkers in his wake.

Was there any doubt the T-Man would survive despite being ordered out of the cabin by the would be baby killer?

In an all guns blazing episode, Tyreese got some memorable screen time, especially later when Rick thanked him for looking after baby Judith. We couldn't make out the words, but that's what made the scene work.


4. Daryl and Carol's reunion
They could have ruined it by having Daryl sweeping Carol into his arms and kissing her and ruining another female character like they did with Andrea.

Instead, what we had is two people who found each other in the zombie apocalypse being reunited. Two people who love each other, but probably not in a romantic way.

Kudos to the writers for not falling into the let's have another ZA romance. Maggie and Glenn fill that role well enough.


5. The return of Morgan.
He's been in only 3 episodes, but they were 3 of the finest episodes in the show. We heard that he was coming back, but when we saw him it still knocked us on our butts.

What we want to know now is where is Morgan heading?

Who's leaving the marks on the tree for him to follow?

Has Morgan gone bad, or is he heading to meet up with Rick?

We can't wait to find out.


6 Things The Walking Dead has taught us - in pictures

The Walking Dead has taught us a lot



1. Never trust a man with one eye...





2. Children will find new ways to entertain themselves in the zombie apocalypse...


Penny had her toys


Lizzy had walker friends


3. It's not always a bad thing to kill mom...

The hardest thing Carl has to do


4. Sometimes, walkers can be your friends...

Michonne knows how to outwit them walkers



5. The good die (especially if they have beards)...




6. Unlikely people can become heroes...






Z Nation - The highlights so far

The first few episodes of Z Nation were disappointing for me. With low production values and low grade acting, I almost stopped watching. But, the show's picked up and there have been highlights. 

WARNING - MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD 


Zombie babies eat people. FACT.

The zombie baby in the first episode. One minute, it was, "how are we going to look after the baby?" The next, said helpless baby isn't so helpless and is devouring Hammond. 


Citizen Z here.

Citizen Z (played by DJ Qualls) - One of the few characters developed so we care about him. Having him create a fake relationship with flame-haired survivor Addy Carver, shows how lonely he is. 


An interesting guy.

10K - so called because that's how many zombies he wants to kill. It was a touching moment when he recounted how he has to kill his dad. And the flashback was a good idea too. The reason The Walking Dead is so popular is because we care about the characters.
Up to now, Z Nation had failed to do that, until we got 10K's story. 


Doc and zombie pal.

They almost killed a main character. Before, apart from Hammond, surviving the zombie apocalypse seemed far too easy. The storyline with Doc made a change. We thought he'd become one of the undead, right up to the moment they shot at him.

A doped up zombie. I've seen a lot of zombie shows and movies and I've never seen that being done. 


Zombies get smarter

Zombies playing dead in the water. In Z Nation, the zombies do evolve. They - well some of them - have got smarter. 

On the downside...
They still need to slow down the pace. There's too many things happening all at once.


Another blink and you'll miss it moment

Example - in the last episode, they were out gunned by a gang who took their vehicle, right after that they came across a family who looked like they were being robbed by the same gang only for the family to turn out to be the robbers. The family killed the gang. Right after, they came across the family being eaten by zombies.

Moments of drama, lose their impact if they all happen at once.