Joshua Cook, Welcome, it's Spotlight live show, and we are happy you are our guest, if I were to ask you to write a book about yourself, how would you start the first four or five sentences please?
Joshua Cook I'm a man.
I'm a hypocrisy.
I'm a writer.
But most of all, I am a man.
Just a man.
Shah Fazli Thank you, now tell us along that route that you have written a book, and the book is about what?
Joshua Cook Georgia and Sam must save young Alice from the clutches of a man driven solely by corporate greed and a thirst for power.
In a world where corporate greed is allowed to run wild, Roslun Global has become the largest pharmaceutical company in the world. As head of this juggernaut of a company, Richard Roslun wields unheard of global power. To obtain and hold onto this power, Roslun is willing to do anything, including killing innocents.
When Richard Roslun realizes what he must do to save everything, his sights become set on a young girl named Alice. When Alice's mother returns home from work with an infection, all hell breaks lose in Alice's fragile world. Alice and her sister Georgia are hiding as death is literally banging on the front door when the unthinkable happens.
A second outbreak tests the love between Sam Ashe and and his fiancé Heather. Sam is a horror geek who has always been obsessed with zombies. When his fantasies become a reality, the man inside him will have to rise to the adventure ahead.
Fate brings Sam and Georgia together in the mission to save young Alice. Will love be enough to fight off the undead and stop pure corporate greed?
Money from the sale of AiZ: Alice in Zombieland (Complete Saga) will be used to help the author fight to see his daughter. No child should be forced to grow up without a father.
Shah Fazli Thanks, why did you write this book, where did you get the idea from please?
Joshua Cook I had always dreamed of writing a book. Ever since I was younger, I imagined my name on the cover of my own books. When I lost my job last year, there weren't many people looking for help. So I decided to start my own job.
I had ideas for short stories about talking and thinking zombies from jokes we made at my former job. I created http://ZombieACRES.comand began publishing short stories that would eventually become 'AiZ: Alice in Zombieland (Complete Saga)'
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Shah Fazli Zombie A.C.R.E.S, is the title you want to talk about, why do you think the idea behind your story is a great idea and it would work in attracting readers?
Joshua Cook The title I would like to talk about is 'AiZ: Alice in Zombieland (Complete Saga)' [available special limited edition paperback - and on Kindle, Nook, and paperback], which is part of the Zombie A.C.R.E.S. series I created.
I have always been a fan of the zombie genre. Recently I have noticed some things were missing from the zombie genre. The first being knowledge of zombies. In almost every zombie story, when the dead start gnawing on people, nobody knows what they are. Not in 'AiZ: Alice in Zombieland'.
Another thing missing is an explanation. It is usually some mysterious event, or just no explanation, that brings the dead back to life. I have always suspected science being the reason behind the zombie apocalypse, and with the power of the pharmaceutical industry, it was just a common sense connection.
Shah Fazli Tell us about your zombies a little more please?
Joshua Cook My zombies are different than any other zombies out there right now. Actually I have two different kinds of undead.
I have your normal, rise from the grave, mindless killing monsters. I fall into the camp of Romero-style zombies, so my mindless walkers will never run or do anything other than eat human flesh.
"AiZ: Alice in Zombieland (Complete Saga)' also has medicated zombies. These zombies have been infected with the Second Birth Serum, a drug created by giant pharmaceutical company Roslun Global. These zombies can think, speak and sometimes almost feel, but there is still a hunger for the living that they just can't fight.
Since the Second Birth Serum (SBS), is still being perfected by Roslun Global, these medicated zombies are just trial specimens - with all effects unknown.
Shah Fazli Interesting, so what happens once your zombies come across humans, can you describe the first few seconds of their encounter please?
Joshua Cook With the medicated zombies, it all depends on the situation. Since they can think, they can reason. Take William Lohman, for example...
In 'The Interview', the first Zombie A.C.R.E.S. story, William Lohman is an experiment who used to be a superstar experiment for Roslun Global. He would be toted all around and shown to powerful (and mega-rich) people to show how great of an investment this 'Cure for Death' is.
After awhile, William Lohman began to have a conscience and felt bad for the atrocities that Roslun Global was committing behind the scenes. This great new drug comes at a very dark and deep price. To try and clear his conscience, William holds an interview that is seen by the whole world - outing many of Roslun Global's secret to the public.
If you came across a mindless zombie, there would be nothing except gore and the sound of agonizing screaming as the monster tore you apart.
So it all depends on the situation and the type of zombie you come across.
Shah Fazli Thank you, tell us about the role of your main characters in the book, do they kill all the zombies, or they look to defuse them in a different way?
Joshua Cook My group of heroes are forced into action for different reasons.
Alice was just at home minding her young brother when her mom burst through the door in a panic. She was bitten and proceeds to attack her children. The only person Alice can think to call is her older sister, Georgia 'Gee' Marie, who is home from college.
Joshua Cook Sorry about that, hit enter too soon. Continuation of last answer...
Gee saves Alice only to find she has been bitten by her mother. Roslun Global's men come in to clean up the mess and take Alice. Now Gee is on the hunt to save her sister.
Sam Ashe is a horror geek who has been obsessed with zombies his whole life. When an outbreak causes him to have to kill his fiancee, he only has revenge on his mind.
As for the other main human character we have Richard Roslun, the head of Roslun Global. It is Richard Roslun that wants young Alice for his twisted experiments. There is something special about her, and he wants it.
Joshua Cook When Sam and his fiance are trying to escape an outbreak, Sam tries to come to her rescue. He pulls a pistol he has, but in the heat of the moment, he cannot seem to aim it correctly. His hands are shaking as he is watching Heather get devoured before his eyes. His first shot barely misses and his second is just as bad. After finally finishing off Heather's attacker, Sam comes to the realization that he will have to kill his fiancee.
As Heather rises, her big brown eyes now cold and dead, Sam grabs the nearest weapon which is a tire iron, and plunges it deep into his love's skull with tears streaming down his face.
Shah Fazli We like Roslun, but we know a little about him so far please?
Joshua Cook Richard Roslun comes from a background of money and power. His father was the former head of Roslun global until he was murdered late one night. After William Lohman came out about Roslun Global's experiments, Richard was forced to do anything he can to keep hold of his power, including kidnapping Alice.
Shah Fazli Can you read from your book for us please?
Joshua Cook The zombie hit the ground like a sack of potatoes, and seemed almost confused for the slightest of moments. Sam leapt to his feet, but he wasn’t quite fast enough. The zombie managed to grab at Sam’s foot before he could reach the car.
“Sam! I’m coming.”
Sam looked up from the ground and screamed, “No! Stay in the car!” But his screams were too late. Heather was already out of the car and charging at the rising zombie. She scooped up the discarded revolver mid-stride, and brought the butt down hard on the back of his head, causing him to fall back to the ground.
“Quick, run!” Heather grabbed Sam’s arm and pulled him to the car. “Get the tire on, Baby, hurry.”
Sam looked at the zombie, which was struggling to get on its feet. He shoved the donut spare onto the wheel hub.
I can make it!
In his haste he fumbled the lug nuts, dropping them to the ground like a shower of fat chrome raindrops.
“Sam, hurry.” Heather hoped into the passenger seat. The zombie had begun to close in on the car, again focused on Heather’s screaming.
Sam swiped up the lug nuts he could easily reach, but there weren’t enough. A twinkling spear of bright morning sunlight glinting off of chrome caught his eye. The last nut was just under the car. As he reached for the lug nut, he heard the scream. It wasn’t the scream of a woman fighting for her life, but more the dreadful scream of a life being taken.
Sam jumped to his feet. As his head got above the roof line, he saw the car door wide open. The zombie had ripped a chunk of Heather’s shoulder out. Sam screamed; it was a guttural, primal sound that hearkened back to when humans first encountered large predators. Heather’s body fell to the ground with the zombie hunkering down over it. The monster stopped feasting on her flesh when he heard Sam’s cry. It looked at Sam with dead eyes, a chunk of Heather hanging from its bloody maw.
“You son of a bitch! I’ll fuckin’ kill you!” Before the zombie had time to make its dead legs move, Sam was on top of him. He bashed the zombie’s head in with the handle of the jack, its chrome skin glistening in the sun until it was covered in too much gore to reflect the sun’s rays. “I was trying to save us…to save her.” Blood splattered on Sam with every swing of the handle. It mixed with the hot tears that streamed down his face. “I was so close. Why?!”
Sam continued to beat on the bloody pulp until there was nothing left of the zombie’s head. After ten minutes he finally slumped to the ground; his energy exhausted, his shoulders and arms turned to jelly. He stared at the grotesque mess in front of him, not really seeing it. His eyes focused on nothing, until another sound got his attention.
It was coming from the other side of him. Sam forced his weary head to rotate in the direction of the sound. The muscles in his neck protested, creaking like rusty hinges as they turned his skull.
She’s moving. It can’t be true.
The thought registered in his mind, but he could not make sense of it right away. Heather slowly stood. Blood dripped from the spot where her throat used to be. She surveyed the world with her new, dead eyes.
“No! Please God, no!” Sam cried.
Heather cast those bleary eyes, once so full of joy and life on Sam. He looked back into those same eyes. No signs of life remained, but he could still see his one true love. All the memories they had ever shared ran through his mind; all the love they had made, all the plans for the future they had discussed. The joy… The pain… And now, the end.
As Heather shuffled towards Sam, he gently pushed her back. With every advance she made, the urgency of her hunger became more apparent. Each gurgled attempt at a moan was like a dagger in Sam’s heart. When he could finally take no more, he raised the jack handle high into the air. Using both hands, he brought the sharp end down, piercing her skull.
A whisper, so full of love and sorrow, “I love you…always and forever.”
Shah Fazli Can you give us a few tips on writing please?
Joshua Cook Never give up. that is the most important advice I have. If you truly want to be writer, then write. Don't let anyone else stop you or get you down. Use the good and bad comments alike to improve your craft and push on even harder. It is a hard road, but in the end, it will be more than worth it.
Shah Fazli This was a real good time, and we enjoyed our time, Josh, thank you so much for giving us the pleasure.
Shah Fazli Visit: http://shahsightshop.blogspot.de/2012/10/aiz-joshua-cook.html
ShahSight Literary Book Shop: AiZ - Joshua Cook,shahsightshop.blogspot.com
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Joshua Cook Thank you for having me on to talk about 'Alice in Zombieland', the limited edition (at http://Zombieacres.com)
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