Zombies – Not just for Hallowe’en anymore!
When I was asked to contribute a guest spot to this blog, I didn’t know at first what I was going to write about. I’m not great at shameless self promotion, has to do with that self-deprecating Canadian thing I have going on. As I was procrastinating in the name of ‘doing research for the next book’ (okay, yes, I was surfing the Internet), I stumbled upon a web page proudly proclaiming that May is Zombie Awareness Month. That fits and it’s a perfect topic for me to talk about, one I know quite a bit about.
You see, my book ‘Dead Girls, Dogs and Ponies’ (currently available on xoxopublishing.com) is about zombies. One zombie in particular, named Justin. He is not your average zombie, being possessed of more acute mental faculties and is indeed the narrator of this book, hopefully the first in what will be a series of books all set in the same thematic world where zombies, vampires, werewolves, faeries and dragons and other fantastic supernatural beings exist alongside and among humans, keeping their secrets and policing themselves and each other lest the mortals become aware of the stream of abnormal culture running just beneath the surface. Justin is hired by the head of one of the city’s vampire dynasties to uncover some information for her. What he uncovers is far more devious and dangerous than he’d imagined and he soon wishes it was information he didn’t know as his knowledge endangers both Justin and his friends. The book is also about loss and the enduring nature of love as Justin spends a good portion of the book remembering and pining for his dead girlfriend Honey. Justin is shrewd and possessed of a caustic wit but also with surprisingly deep emotions that surface in unpredictable ways. I am currently hard at work on the sequel, ‘Food Chain Boogie’, which will be released hopefully in the fall of this year.
Back to Zombie Awareness Month. I hadn’t realized it until the website pointed it out, but the majority of zombie movies are actually set in May, which is quite fitting. In ancient Rome and Greece, most of the festivals in May were to honour the various gods of the dead such as Hermes who was not only the god of speed and of thieves but was also known as the ‘herdsman of the dead’. He lead the recently departed to their final rewards in the underworld. During May in Rome, festivals were also held to appease the Lemures, who were the ‘wandering spirits of the dead’ and the Lares praestites, who were the ghosts said to stand guard around Rome.
May is said to bring about rebirth and fecundity as the earth sends forth its’ blossoms in all their glory. It is a time for renewal and hope and apparently for zombies, so don a grey ribbon and join me in uttering a mighty ‘gargh!’ in celebration of ‘Dead Girls, Dogs and Ponies’ and Zombie Awareness Month!