Thursday, June 5, 2014

Summer of Zombie Blog Tour 2014: Rebecca Besser

You're reading Books, Beer and Blogshit! It's the only blog that spends it's summer rotting away on a beach. I am you're rotting-in-the-reek blog host, Mr. Frank!

We are ready to declare 2014 the year of the female zombie writer. There is a veritable parade of lady authors tackling the blood, gore and guts of zombie fiction. We continue the estrogen driven word slingers in the spotlight with today's victim on the Summer of Zombie Blog Tour, Rebecca Besser.

Books, Beer and Blogshit:  Are you a survivor or one of the undead?

Rebecca Besser:   Survivor.

The Blogshit:  What is your latest piece of zombie fiction we should be concerning ourselves with? 

Rebecca Besser:  My latest release is, “Cursed Bounty.” It’s a zombie western where the zombie is a bounty hunter controlled by an elected politician for greed, gain, and control. 

That being said… I have a story in and co-edited a zpoc prepper anthology entitled, “Feast or Famine.” It will be released sometime in the next month or two.

The Blogshit:  Do you feel you are a classic or progressive type of zombie fiction writer? 

Rebecca Besser:  Both. I write out of the ordinary zombie stories, as well as some that stay with classic zombie fiction.

The Blogshit:  What makes your zombies different from all others? 

Rebecca Besser:  My zombies (in Undead Drive-Thru and Cursed Bounty) tend to be single zombies, not apocalyptic hordes. In “Undead Drive-Thru” a zombie is kept for a pet by a wife that loves him too much to put him down. In “Cursed Bounty,” the zombie is a voodoo zombie, i.e. one that is controlled by his master and only goes after given targets rather than anyone he crosses paths with.

The Blogshit:  What makes your living different from all the others? 

Rebecca Besser:  In “Undead Drive-Thru” I twist the living all around and the characters change right before your eyes. I’ve had people tell me they ended up hating the character they loved at the beginning, and loving the characters they hated at the beginning. There’s full evolution, realism, and humor in my characters that makes you seem them as real and feel something for them.

In “Cursed Bounty” I have a former slave who you can almost see in your mind’s eye! I’m proud of that character.

I made at least one character in each of the above mentioned books scarier than the zombies themselves. Humans become the sick monsters in the end, making the zombies less terrifying in the twisted perceptions of the people who are sick in the head and/or heart.

The Blogshit:  Do you think it's important, in this climate, to run with the pack or really try to reinvent the wheel in zombie fiction?

Rebecca Besser:   I think that there needs to be some change from the norm. It’s getting to the point that the market is saturated with the same kind of story—you can only read it so many times before you get bored. It’s a challenge to authors to try and make the same old, same old interesting. This will naturally lead to change and evolution in zombie fiction.

The Blogshit:  Zombie fiction seems heavily dependent upon working within the construct of a series. Do you feel that is the way that makes it work best for you or do you think there is still room for stand alone stories?

Rebecca Besser:   I think stand-alone stories can be done. They would be pretty long and it would be hard to give people the story they desire before it’s all over, though. For a stand-alone zombie title, I think you would have to reinvent the overdone zombie plots. My novella, “Undead Drive-Thru,” was designed to be stand-alone or a series. But, the biggest complaint I received for the book is that it was too short. Granted, yes, it was a novella, but even if it had been a full length novel, it would have been a challenge to satisfy the readers.

The Blogshit:  Are you ever afraid of being pigeon-holed in this zombie fiction genre?

Rebecca Besser:   No. I write a variety of genres, for various age groups. I’ve been published in poetry, nonfiction, and fiction. The challenge I have is settling into one genre. I’m best known for horror, but my other most published area is education materials for children. Yeah, I’m all over the place. My first full length novel, “Nurse Blood,” is a serial killer thriller. But, I’ve just signed a three book deal with Nocturnal Press Publications for the re-release of “Undead Drive-Thru (spring 2015),” the sequel, “Undead Regeneration (summer 2015),” and the prequel, “Undead Origins (spring/summer 2016).” So…I’m still very much in the zombie genre.

The Blogshit:  For your next zombie story, stand alone or series, do you think you will need to go sicker or smarter to keep it going? 

Rebecca Besser:  Both! I’m kind of known for writing that makes one think, but also pushes the envelope. I go hardcore with both whenever possible. I want my readers to think, flinch, feel emotion, and gage/shudder. I want my readers to have it all.

The Blogshit:  On last year's tour, we asked about what to put on your zombie sandwich. This year, we want to know: What special ingredients would you use to pickle the pickles on your zombie sandwich? 

Rebecca Besser:  Eyeballs, ‘cause they’re juicy! Who doesn’t love eyeball-jellied pickles?

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