Hi everyone! When I was asked to take part in the 30 Shades of Zombie event, I was all over that. I mean, zombie fiction? Check, I write that (the Living With the Dead zombie comedy series). Women writers? Uh-huh, I’m one of those, too. So it’s totally right up my alley. And then I was given the topic of the influence of movies on my work and… yup, this was made for me.
I’ve always been a huge movie fan. When we recently moved across country, my husband and I sold off a huge portion of our possessions, including all our furniture and a lot of entertainment items. But we kept our GIANT movie collection that now takes up a big section of our wall around our shiny, new TV. I’m a re-watcher, I love to revisit my favorites, and he can find something redeeming in almost any movie (he says every movie has a ‘moment’ that makes it worthwhile on some level). As a kid, I liked to replay movies in my head, reworking scenes or endings I didn’t like. I guess those ‘retellings’ are an early version of writing my own stories.
Which brings us forward a great many years to 2009. This was the year that a movie called “Zombieland” came out. If you haven’t seen it, it is a HILARIOUS take on the zombie apocalypse. I didn’t go in order to get ideas. At the time, I was only writing historical romance under my other author names. I just wanted to hang out with friends and have a fun evening. I did, but I also left with an idea starting to worm its way into my brain. An idea about a zombie apocalypse, a failing marriage and the use of marital self-help books to fight zombies.
But I didn’t want to write a regular zombie story. First, I wanted it to be funny (hence marital self-help book advice and fighting zombies), but I wanted my characters to actually know something about zombies! A lot of times, it’s like these people have never heard of zombies before their own outbreak. So I watched a LOT of zombie movies while I wrote, trying to get a certain kind of pacing, trying to remind myself of the common questions that deal with zombies (like fast versus slow moving).
For the first time, movies were a really guiding force in how I paced a book. The story read like a book in my mind, so why not?
And that’s why this question is so perfect for me. How influential are movies to me as a writer? When we’re talking about my zombie books the answer is: VERY. And you know what? I think it shows, considering how many readers have said that MARRIED WITH ZOMBIES, FLIP THIS ZOMBIE and EAT SLAY LOVE are all very movie-like in the way they flow. And since I love books that suck me in like a movie, I’m okay with that. In fact, as I work on the fourth and final book in the series, THE ZOMBIE WHISPERER (out in early 2013), I’m playing it as a movie, too.
So my question to you is, do you like books that feel like movies? And what’s your favorite zombie movie?
Jesse Petersen writes not-your-normal paranormal fiction and loves when readers say she made them laugh. She is the author of the Living with the Dead zombie series, which includes Married with Zombies, Flip this Zombie, Eat Slay Love and The Zombie Whisperer (to be released 2013). She’ll also be starting a new monster series in April 2013.
(Photo © Imaginate Photography)
Flip this Zombie (Living with the Dead #2) -The Zombie Apocalypse has been good to Sarah and David. Their marriage is better than ever. They communicate well, share responsibilities, and now, they’re starting a business. ZombieBusters-for all your zombie extermination needs.
There are lots of zombies and that means lots of customers…Except one of them doesn’t want the zombies dead, he wants them alive and ready for experimentation. Mad scientists make for difficult clients and this time, Sarah and David might have bitten off more than they can chew.
JESSE PETERSEN ONLINE
Jesse is giving away a paperback copy of Flip this Zombie, the second Living With the Dead book.
For entry into the giveaway, please answer the following question then fill out the form below: Do you like books that feel like movies? And what’s your favorite zombie movie?
This giveaway is open to UK & US readers and ends 12:00am GMT 30th November 2012