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Zombies vs. Bigfoot: Eric S Brown [INTERVIEW]

Somewhere as far back as 2010, I talked to Eric S Brown about an interview, and he was all for making an appearance at The Zombiephiles, but we were both so busy, it didn’t happen until the very end of 2011, after I read Last Stand In A Dead Land.

Last Stand (Grand Mal Press) was a unique blend of folklore, science fiction and horror that only Eric S Brown could spin into an undead thriller. Whether you read Brown’s work for the gorey action, the mix of genre monsters, or his sick humor, fans of the author will be quite pleased to sink their teeth into the tale.

There’s so much controversy around the nature of the undead and possible outbreak scenarios that it’s easy to forget that our society has had plenty of other monsters lurking in the background throughout our history, and Brown reminds his readers that shit can always get worse during a zombie outbreak, especially if humans aren’t the top of the food chain in the first place.

I was reminded what a fantastic author Brown was, and I didn’t want the 2012 apocalypse to further delay things…so what better way to start the new year than with an interview with such a prolific writer?!

Q. Do you ever sleep? Seriously, you’ve had so many new stories released in 2011 alone, when do you find time to do anything else…like sleep?

Ha. I love my job and I guess I get a bit over zealous about it. Writing for me isn’t always easy as I am a family man with a six year old and another kiddo on the way in March. During the school year though, up until this coming March anyway, I usually have the house to myself so I just dive into it and try to do as much as I can. A lot of coffee helps. Sometimes I wonder if my blood has become coffee.

Q. Did you plan on a writing career, or was it just something you stumbled upon & ran with it?

In the second grade, my teacher had a “career day” where we students we supposed to come as what we wanted to be when we grew up. I wore a Green Lantern shirt and said I was going to be a member of the Corps. This was not an acceptable answer so I look at her and said, “Fine, if I can’t have adventures, I’ll write them.” I knew in that moment I wanted to be a writer when I got older but it wasn’t until I was 26 and married that my wife finally got me off my butt and I started sending out my work. My first story was accepted by two print magazines. Yeah it was sim. sub. I turned one down and haggled them into a taking another tale and sold “Night Shopping” to Burning Sky Magazine up in Maine. Needless to say, the twin acceptance letters and in the end two sold stories got me rolling. My first book was on the market two years later and now, writing pays a good portion of the household bills and is my career.

Q. Do you have a man-cave or somewhere particular you like to write? Are you one of those authors who have a personal soundtrack playing in the background? What gets you in the mood for zombies?

To tell the truth, I do most of my writing in my car. It’s my “man cave” in the sense that I can be alone there and focus on nothing but the work at hand. And yeah, I listen to a lot of music when I write. Mostly for me, it’s Weird Al, Rush, and Ghoultown. Love all three of those sounds.

Q. So, your fans already know that you’re capable of writing different sub-genres of horror, but do you have any plans to branch out to, let’s say, script-writing? Have you thought about turning one of your zombie stories into a web-series?

I am more of a comic guy. If DC Comics ever came knocking, you’d see me saying good bye to horror in a heartbeat. I’ve always dreamed of writing superhero comics like The Flash, The Legion, etc but so far that just hasn’t been in the cards for me. I do however have a Bigfoot horror comic entitled Croatoan hitting in 2012 from Knightwatch Press.

Q. Lots of talk about zombies being overdone in books and film, and yet they’ve become so popular, even the CDC joined the undead band wagon this year. What do you think next year will be like for zombiephiles? Do you think 2012 will ramp up talk of a zombie apocalypse, or do you think the undead will be pushed aside for something else?

For me, it’s Bigfoot and Zombies. I love the mix of those two. My books Bigfoot War II: Dead in the Woods and Last Stand in a Dead Land blend Bigfoot horror with the zombie apocalypse and really pour on the gore and action like some crazed horror fanboy’s dream. I also am following in the footsteps of Joe R. Lansdale and his classic Dead in the West with my book (as of now) titled Cowboys vs. Zombies which takes a look at what an Old West zombie apocalypse would have been like. It’s due out from Severed Press in 2012 as well.

Q. Who are some of your favorite authors? Based on their work, would you want any of them on your survival team? Why or why not?

David Drake is my all time hero. I grew up wanting to be him and even had delusions of being a military SF writer when I was sending out my first short stories. Drake started by writing horror too then went on to become the king of military SF. I am also a big fan of F. Paul Wilson’s book The Keep and think it’s one of the greatest period horror novels ever written alongside Joe R. Lansdale’s Dead in the West. Dan Simmons and H.P. Lovecraft are other heroes of mine. And I am blessed enough to count Jonathan Maberry and David Moody among my friends. They’re both great guys and have an incredible level of talent. Their works are simply amazing. In regards to those two though, I don’t think I would want them on my survival team. No offense to them but if Z day hits I want to be J.L. Bourne. That guy can kick some serious butt.

Q. For a while there, I thought you gave up on zombies in favor of your Bigfoot Wars. Tell us about your recent writing projects, and give us an idea of what we can expect from you in 2012?

Well my newest book is titled A Pack of Wolves and reboots the werewolf mythos much like my Bigfoot War books did for Sasquatch. It’s an action packed adventure horror tale set in the Old West that’s kind of like The Young Guns crossed with The Howling. Bigfoot War IV is slated for 2012 too (which again features zombie Sasquatch rampaging through the world of man) alongside Cowboys vs. Zombies and a short book entitled Into the Light from Coscom Entertainment that’s an apocalyptic tale with a zombie like feel featuring monsters of my own creation. This year will also see the first Bigfoot War being re-released in as a limited hardcover thanks to its crazy level of success and the following its gained.

We look forward to reviewing Cowboys vs Zombies in the future!!

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