Weekend news: I got interviewed, Zombie Walk Video and more!

So it’s been a dismal week productivity wise. That happens, I’m told. I’ll just redouble my efforts next week. It’s a pain editing halfhearted crap into good material, so it’s probably for the better. I’m getting good feedback on Locked Out, which is very encouraging to make me sit down and crank out Deadlocked. I want to have it out before NaNoWriMo.

I promised you a video. Here is the footage Kyle  took. He got some great shots of the zombies swarming a Justin Bieber display.

Montreal Zombie Walk 2011 video – skip to 1:16 if you only care about seeing Bieber get eaten (there are two waves, second is at 1:50ish)

Goals for this week: Deadlocked to 5000 words. If I get Locked Out back from editor (hi mom) then new draft. I’m hoping to have some nice cover art to show off at some point in the nearish future, but that might not be this week.

Finally, I have an interview about Locked In posted. This is happy news. Thanks to 1st Author Interviews, you guys rock.

 

 

The Zombie’s Bride – Comedic Zombie Flash Fiction

Today I decided to hammer out that flash fiction I’ve been dreaming of. I’m into the idea of having unlikable people getting eaten by zombies because of their own faults. This flash story exists in the same universe as Zombie Bedtime Stories (a very familiar character from Locked In is mentioned!), but are self-contained and no foreknowledge of the series is needed to enjoy them.

In other news, Locked Out (ZBS2) has been sent off for editing at my super secret editing factory (thanks Mom), and Deadlocked (ZBS3) has been outlined and writing will commence shortly.

And now, for my first installment of Bite Sized Zombies: The Zombie’s Bride:

Content warning: Foul language and gore.

Edit 08/19/2011: I have a version free on Smashwords and Kindle (this one isn’t free, it will be once they auto-price match to Smashwords. I can’t set it to be free directly or I would have!). It is much cleaner than the below version (I cleaned up a lot of the typos and goofs). Check it out if it’s easier for you.

Julia pursed her lips as she stared into the mirror. She couldn’t get her earrings to hang right. She couldn’t believe after how much she’d spent on them that they couldn’t even point down properly. She pouted and turned to her maid of honor, Sarah “Oh my God these earrings are going to ruin my whole wedding!” she said. Julia had spent weeks and more money than her credit cards would allow on this, and it had to be perfect! She had even joined a gym and worked hard so she could squeeze into the largest size her dream wedding gown would come in.

Sarah rolled her eyes. “Everything is going to ruin your wedding. First the cake, then you needed to lose fifty pounds, then the bridesmaids not wanting to wear those hideous blue and turquoise horizontal striped dresses. Get over it already! Ugh.” Sarah was awkward – tall and skinny.

“I want to be the most beautiful girl at my own wedding, is that so much to fucking ask?” Julia snorted, her wide, flat nose flared.

“I want to be able to show people those pictures!”

“Then find a man who will spend more than one night with you and get married you dumb slut.” Julia looked forward to not having to spend as much time with Sarah. She only put up with her because she made her look graceful, and because her first choice had vanished from the face of the Earth.

“You are such a fat cow. I bet he cheats on you within a year.” Sarah stuck out her tongue. Julia lamented having to replace Haley as her maid of honor, but she stopped answering her phone at the last minute. At least her dress fit Sarah. While she hated Haley for being a too-good perfect girl who had the audacity to be good looking and have a handsome boyfriend, at least Haley never called her fat.

“God you are such a bitch, I think -” she began, cut off by her ringing phone. She answered it while Sarah rolled her eyes like a petulance child. “What?” It was her fiancé. He told her there had been a fight at his bachelor party, and he and his friends had been attacked by a crazed person on the street.

“What the fuck is wrong with you! You know it’s bad luck for us to be together or even talk before the wedding! You’re ruining this for me! You’re ruining our marriage and our relationship and how could you be so fucking stupid?” Julia screamed into the phone. She watched as Sarah giggled. Of course she wouldn’t understand real love.

“Well, I thought you might want to know. We need to go to the hospital and -” He said as  he stammered into the phone.

“You are not postponing our wedding after I have worked this hard! You’re not going to ruin this again, I don’t care, you will be there or I will never forgive you!” Julia slammed down the phone. “Can you believe that dick? He wanted to postpone the ceremony because his friend got bitten by a crazy woman.”

Sarah only laughed.

~

The next morning she woke up feeling bloated from all the chocolate she’d eaten to comfort herself. Wedging herself into her dress was an insurmountable challenge. Eventually, she crammed herself into the tight gown and waited while her hair, makeup and other grooming was done to perfection. Even her earrings hung right. She waited for her father to arrive with his Cadillac to take them to the scenic lake they’d reserved for the ceremony. She waited. He arrived on time.

“How could you not be early, Dad? You’re going to ruin it all!” she said, annoyed at how inconsiderate he was.

“Sorry, darling. I know it’s your special day” He said, his voice quiet and thoughtful. He checked the time, and she realized his timing was perfect.

“Oh I’m sorry, Daddy. You know how much I love you, right?”

“Of course I do sweetie.” He returned to driving, and watched the road in silence.

They came up to the lakeside resort. Balloons floated from the fence posts along the way. Julia wasn’t impressed. She remembered asking for foil balloons, not little kid birthday balloons! They turned the corner, and she screamed. “This place is a mess! It’s all ruined!” The decorations had been ripped down, picnic tables and chairs were overturned and the windows of the lodge were broken. “Oh my God Daddy, what happened?”

“I don’t know sweetie. Stay in the car, I’m going to make some calls.” He brought the car to idle by the road and took out his phone. Julia sat and stared out the window. A figure moved, and caught her eye. It was John, her fiancé. He was wearing a white tuxedo, and faced the water. Enraged, she unlocked the door and stepped outside. “Darling, no!” her father said.

“It’s okay Daddy, I see John and I am going to get an explanation for this right now!” She hurried out the door and slammed it shut, jamming her long white dress in the door. “Oh fuck not my dress!” Julia cried as she opened the door and pulled the dress out. A long black grease stain marred the dress’ white silk. She marched towards the lake. Rage emanated from her pores. This was all John’s fault! “John you dumb fucker! You ruined my special day! How could you let it get like this!”

John turned to face her. His face was pale, and blood was smeared all over his face. His beautiful white tuxedo was coated in drying blood, already turning brown. “Oh my God, I told you we are not having a stupid theme wedding. And we have to return that tux! What were you thinking?”

There was no reply, only a loud, inhuman scream. He ran towards her, mouth agape. She took a step back and fell prone onto her back. She rolled from side to side, trying to get traction to right herself. Her dress tore. “You bastard you made me ruin my dress!” Julia screamed as she threw her hands in front of her face.

He crashed into her, mouth wide and teeth bared. He smelled of blood. Chunks of meat were stuck between his teeth. “Daddy help me!” she yelled. Pain overwhelmed her and John tore into her chest just below her collarbone. She tried to push his head away, but her efforts proved futile. He was too strong. She could see the best man running towards them along the beach, like a knight ready to save her. “Help me Sean!”

Sean looked at her and screamed as John ripped another chunk of flesh from her chest. Sean didn’t stop; he pounced on her like an animal. “No! Stop!” she said as she wheezed another breath. The corset wasn’t letting her breathe! She heard her father calling to her in the distance. Sean tore a chunk of flesh from her throat. A spray of blood soaked the sand and her white dress. Her arms went weak.

John leaned in and tore the flesh from her round cheeks. Tears streamed down her face and mixed with the flows of blood from her wounds. She was so dizzy and tired. The mouthfuls of flesh they hewed from her didn’t hurt anymore. The betrayal did.

Before everything went black, her last thoughts were about how John ruined her special day.

Renewed vigor and ideas

I went on a mini-vacation to Ottawa today. It was the annual rib fest, and there was no way I could resist delicious ribs. My boyfriend and I met up with my cousin, and a friend of mine made the surprise journey from Montreal to Ottawa, under the lure of delicious ribs.

After a total change of scenery, I was happy to discover that I still know my way through downtown Ottawa very well. I even still make a passable tour guide. I was distressed to find out that the Cat Man of Parliament Hill had died. Fortunately, the cats are still there, very friendly and well taken care of.

Next week I have a review to write about the opening installment of the Fireworks festival here in Montreal. Also, the magazine I’m reviewing for is going to print! I’ll be a published reviewer, which I’m very excited about.

I got a few nice critiques for Locked In, and the revised cover is coming along nicely.

This July, everything changes.

 

Reviewing brainmush is worse than writer’s block

At least with writer’s block there’s no pressure. I have to have this review perfect by Wednesday morning. I was hoping I could get it done today so no more stress, but it never seems to work that way.

Seems I need a new strategy for deadline reviewer’s blocked. It only seems to happen when I enjoy what I’m reviewing. The negative reviews always write themselves. I’ll remember that for when a reviewer tears me a new one at some point in the future.

But, it seems like my reviewing days are over. I had a falling out with one of the places I review for. It’s no big loss, but that leaves my internship which ends at the end of summer. If I want another writing gig, I’ll pick one up.

However, I do take requests and do interviews. You just need to ask. 🙂

 

Twitter is way too much fun for something that’s supposed to be work.

I resisted getting a Twitter account for years. I just didn’t see the point.

I had no idea how easy it was to find people who like what you do, and connect with them. It is unbelievably cool. It seems like it’s a bit of a time-sink, but here’s what I’ve learned in a few short days of using it.

  1. Follow others. They may return the favor, or maybe their friends will. Having a new best friend is good!
  2. Check out things that are cool. Simply because they’re cool.
  3. Check out others who are tangential to the people you are following. There is infinite variety out there.

So basically, be friendly, check out the cool space photos from NASA and have fun.

In writing news: Locked Out is progressing nicely. The main character’s personality is really coming into focus, and I’m having fun with having a protagonist who spends the story alive (as opposed to undead/dead/zombified).I should be getting a Locked In critique tomorrow, draft 6. I’m hoping draft 7/8 will be close to final. I’ve already learned a lot about how to write fiction from the experience, so Locked Out is flowing better and will be a better story.

I’ve decided on which story to outline for NaNoWriMo. It’s going to be my “stuck in a waiting room somewhere” project. Outlining and character sketches are allowed, and I know I need to pump out shy of 1700 words per day to win. It’s going to be an attempt at hard sci-fi with a horror/thriller angle. It’s going to be good!

Planning some fun things

Not much to write about writing-wise. Locked In draft 5.3 is making the rounds, and day-job style work is interfering with my other creative ambitions. Eating is a good cause, though. And absence does make the heart grow fonder.

I’m planning some fun entries for both here and our dear Zombie Empress. I need to plan out some sweet images for anonymously-obsessed-boyfriend to crunch for me. He’s good like that. He’s also creating cover art for Locked Out, a story that’s not even near complete yet. I think he’s really into the whole storyline.

I can get into that a little. Locked In and Locked Out are part of a series of short stories that deal with a zombie apocalypse from non-traditional views. Locked In is from the vantage point of the zombie, and Locked Out concern itself with the story of the scientists who are trying to figure out what’s going on. A third story is planned for the military and evacuation perspective. I’m not sure if I’ll do one about survivors, the angle is so overplayed I’m not sure how to make it fresh without just churning out crap filled with chainsaw-wielding Mary Sues. False dichotomy, I know.

Book cover related excitement produces fifth draft.

Maybe I won’t fail my self-imposed short story challenge of one story per month after all. At least, not in the first month. Taking part in NaNoWriMo will probably automatically fail me for the month of November, but I’m okay with that. Writing a novel probably counts even more, even if it’s not edited and polished.

Hopefully my test readers will adore it and the sixth draft will use substantially less red ink. I’m getting so giddy it’s impossible to contain the “It’s good enough” part of me. I love the new beginning of the story. I scrapped the first paragraph of the story and I think extending the introduction did wonders. I added some extra gore. Everyone loves gore.

I am so stoked over the cover art, still. I can’t wait to show off the story that goes with it.

My Neovella aspirations have stalled a bit. My partners in crime seem to have lost interest in Bobby the Incontinent Space Cadet. I must either slap them or find a way to make it public. I made an open story called Buster the Effeminate Cucumber Farmer, and it rocks. My cowriters are twisted geniuses, and I love it.

Okay, off to a reviewing event. I get to chew on some surrealism and anarchy.

Neovella, the most fun I’ve had in a while.

Today whilst ambling through an online forum I discovered Neovella, a very cool site that lets you take turns collaboratively writing stories with others. Myself, anonymously-obsessed-boyfriend and Trish, another writing buddy jumped on the bandwagon.

Wanting to do something absolutely hilarious and possibly (as of this writing absolutely) disgusting, I started a story called Bobby the Incontinent Space Cadet. Most viewers will find it disturbing. Clearly I never got over the poo jokes of my childhood.

It’s disturbed, but it’s genius. I love this site. Best tool ever to not take yourself too seriously. Especially since my serious work is getting a sweet facelift. I’ve learned a lot, and it will be better off for it.

This weekend is the Anarchist Bookfair. I’ve been told it’s good fun. Some geeky events, gardening, edits and creating the most freaked out weirdness possible with Neovella seems to be the plan for this weekend. Oh, and I have some products to design. I finally received some instructions so I may begin! Those government grants will never see it coming.

I’m off to get some criticism

I have a long and detailed critique ahead of me today, which has to be given and explained in person. Should be fun and a good learning experience.

I have some gardening to look forward to this weekend, the sun if finally out and I want these tomatoes out of my office. They do smell wonderful, though.

I’ve registered for NaNoWriMo, a novel writing contest. 50k words during the month of November. Since festival season will be over, I want to try it out for a few reasons. One is that it will make me swallow my self-doubts and fears so I can just write the damn thing. Another is for the challenge, of course. Lastly, I want to feel like I’m really a part of something, and this seems like a good thing to be a part of, because at worst I drop out and beat myself up. At best I end up with 50+k words and I can finish a story and have written a draft for a novel.

Outlines and character sketches are legal. I have at least three novel outlines/ideas that are in various stages of outlined. No character sketches yet. I need another notebook already.

In other news, my awesome brother started a blog of his own. Go awesome brother, go!

Zombies and rain don’t mix. New review!

This weekend my boyfriend and I had hoped to make a bunch of fake blood, soak ourselves in it and make book covers. Sadly, the rain would have made it rough to do our favorite idea with his good camera, so that’s on hold. I need to come up with more excuses to drench myself in fake blood. (No, not writing vampire stories. I’ve read Dracula and some old book by Christopher Pike, which is about as far as my interest in the subject goes.)

I received an excellent critique on Friday. I’m supposed to get a few more back Monday, and I’m excited to get to work straightening things out and polishing off my draft. It’s been a busy few days so my interesting work productivity has been low. I find I don’t take criticism personally. I’m only human, and after staring at the same piece for so long I’m bound to miss a lot of things, in addition to never having written fiction before. I really appreciate all the support my friends and family have been giving me, they’re very literate people and I’m lucky to have their help and patience. You guys rock. Especially you, Mom and anonymously-obsessed-boyfriend.

Friday night I went to review the punk bands Dead and Divine and The Architects UK. The review is live on Orcasound. Thanks again to my awesome boyfriend/cameraman for getting pictures for me. I’ve been trying to convince him to get a blog of his own, so many amazing shots go unused and it’s a real shame. I’ve been tossing around the idea of writing a “What I really think while reviewing Punk Shows” blog entry, but it just might get me lynched.

The more interesting part of the evening was when I was approached by the manager of Calgary band Fall City Fall and was requested to do an interview. This was my first solo interview, and it went very well. I was impressed by their thoughtfulness and very insightful answers. I’ll post a link to it once I have the audio and transcribe it. It was such a cool experience. I’ve assisted/sat in on interviews before, but this time I was asking the questions. Maybe someday, somebody will be asking me the questions. That’s a scary thought.

Rain is nasty, I have a bunch of plants to go into the garden and now it’s supposed to drop to 9C tomorrow. I guess they’re coming in for the night. I don’t want my tomato, cucumber and super chili plants getting chilled and dying. I need my sunny day outdoor ambiance.

A new week is coming, and I’m going to rock it. Maybe I’ll even have time for some yoga.