Zombies. End of the World. Teenage angst. First Love. This book has it all and then some! Donna Burgess the author of ” Notes from the End of the World, A Zombie Novel” has created the piece that has always been missing from the Zombie Apocalypse narrative. Bridging the gap from outbreak to end of world survival. “Notes” tells the story of one American family dealing with the outbreak, in a compelling story arc, detailing the outbreak in one small American town. Donna joined us to answer some questions about this riveting book.
Donna thank you so much for taking some time to tell us more about Note from the End of the World, A Zombie Novel. What I noticed first about this novel, is that is different from most other zombie stories. There is a slow and realistic approach to the rise of the epidemic. What made you try this approach, as oppose to a fast pace action book, that one would commonly see in this genre?
“I was more drawn to how the epidemic might unfold. I remember a few years back when the Avian Flu was making headlines, Yahoo had posted an article on how to bury your dead, in the event of a cataclysmic spread of the virus. That article scared me to death, thinking of things getting to the point of burying your loved ones in the backyard under the treehouse! I was also interested in the reactions of people–especially teens. Do you carry as normal? Do you panic? I think that’s the thing–kids adjust. Adults panic. This is why I was a huge fan of “Fear The Walking Dead” over the summer. I’m also a “The Walking Dead” fangirl, but they really have never addressed the beginning of “the end,” so to speak.”
Cindy is the hero in the book, she is just like any other teenager, dealing with family, school and first love. Where did you get the inspiration for Cindy’s character?
“Cindy is a combination of myself as a teenager and the kid I wish I had been. She’s a lot more together than I was. Like Cindy, I was a soccer player, wannabe artist, horror movie chick, never quite fit in with the popular crowd, but wasn’t an outcast, either. Unlike Cindy, I was an only child, so I’ve always been fascinated by the relationship between siblings.”
In this Zombie book, the N-Virus is what causes the Zombie Apocalypse, can you share with us how this spread and what the N-virus is.
“The N-Virus or Necro Virus’s origin is never revealed because none of the characters ever knew where it started. But it can be transmitted by bites and contact with infected bodily fluids. Pretty much the standard zombie fare, I suppose. “
A very different twist to this zombie book, is what is called “The Pastures” , explain what that is and why you came up with this kind of a twist.
“I’d actually created The Pastures long before I decided to write this book. It was the topic of a poem called “Pastures” that appeared in a zine called Paper Crow in 2011. But I began to wonder how difficult it would be to “put down” your child or your granny. The Pastures would be a little more humane than stabbing them in the head. Just take them out to a safe place and allow them to wander until they fall to pieces. Plus, I wanted to show that even the most horrible things, like deadly pandemics, will likely be commercialized and politicized as much as possible. “
I really enjoyed how realistically this book was wirtten, from a teenager perspective. It doesn’t rush and shows the strain of one family dealing with their world turning up side down. This that what you wanted the reader to come away with?
“Yes. I wanted to create a setting that is familiar and relatable to the readers–while throwing in some zombies! There are so many good young adult apocalyptic books that do that lately–like The Age of Miracles, This is Not a Test, and Life As We Knew It. I’m hardly comparing my book to these awesome books, but I wanted to create the same feeling of familiarity and sorrow over losing the world we take for granted every day.”
The ending was shocking to me, and I dont want to spoil it for our readers, but is there going to be a sequel?
“Yes, I am working on a sequel. I think Cindy and Nick have some story left. Plus, I want to introduce some other characters into their world. Colin, the sporting goods store guy, will be making an appearance in the new story, as well.”
What do you love most about the Zombie genre?
“To me, it’s the idea of your world suddenly being turned upside down. Plus, there’s something terribly frightening about a loved one trying to eat you for lunch. “
Did you always want to be a writer?
“Yes. My parents always took me to those all-night horror features at the drive-in theaters when I was small. Vincent Price, Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee–all the greats. I loved those movies so much that I would try to make up other monster stories. I wrote my first story in second grade. It was about King Kong!”
What other projects are you currently working on?
“I have sequels to both Notes from the End of the World and Solstice just beyond the outline stages. I also have several short stories and a novella that I’m currently working on. The novella is a ghost story and will be the next thing I release, on Kindle and in print.”
Where can people find your catalog of work?
“Amazon is a sure bet.”
It has been amazing working with you on this book. It is truly one of my favorites, and I am honored to having narrated it. Is there anything else you want to share to our readers?
“Thank you so much, Rebecca. It’s been a pleasure for me, as well. You have done a beautiful job narrating this novel. I would like to encourage readers to please leave reviews for any books you love–my books or those by any author you love. It really helps, not only with sales, but it often brightens their day.”
You can find out more about this book and Donna’s other releases on her website and twitter.
Want a FREE audiobook copy of “Notes from the End of the World” ? Just sign up for Audible.com free trial and get this for FREE, you can cancel anytime AND keep your book! Buy this on Amazon, Audible, and ITunes Today!
[embedplusvideo height=”390″ width=”640″ editlink=”http://bit.ly/1LBtGJc” standard=”http://www.youtube.com/v/NSzZ6BL2eig?fs=1″ vars=”ytid=NSzZ6BL2eig&width=640&height=390&start=&stop=&rs=w&hd=0&autoplay=0&react=1&chapters=¬es=” id=”ep7649″ /]