Cool, Seb. Congrats. Good on ya, boy!
So, I’m writing a 10 page Zombie story.
What? I’m a little late for that party? Yeah, that’s me. A day late and a dollar short. But, ya know what. They sell. People love zombie. Hell, zombies have groupies. I have friends who will buy ANYTHING with zombie related. I know people who buy every last zombie comic.
Which leaves me wondering…..if people who buy every MARVEK title are called “Marvel Zombies,” what do you call people who are obsessed with zombies themselves? “Zombie Zombies”? “Zombie Marvels”?
Anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah. I was defending myself from the “Zombies are SO 2007-2008” attacks I see in my future. My only defense is to ask you to ask me, why am I writing a zombie story?
Go on. Ask me. I’ll wait.
[Seb, why are you writing a zombie story?]
I am SO glad you asked me that.
Because, I was asked to by my friend Martin from GRIM CREW’S, GRIM FURRY TALES, and they are publishing the book.
So, kids, what have we learned?
Never question Seb’s motives?
Well, yes, but besides THAT, what have we learned?
We’ve learned that when someone is actually publishing something, the something they wish to publish becomes the best possible thing for you to be writing at the moment.
Does that mean I’m saying my story is the best thing?
Am I saying zombie stories in general are the best thing?
Am I saying, never look a gift horse in the mouth, and if a group of previously published creators are gracious enough to invite you to contribute a little something, be polite, be grateful, and WRITE it, man!
That’s a big HELLS, YEAH!
Aside from the obvious, the increased chances of seeing print,[Notice I didn’t say DEFINITE chance of seeing print. I still have to submit my finished story and get approval from the group. It’s THEIR party, after all. I’m just lucky to have gotten an invite.]there is the exercise of writing it in the first place.
Short stories are good practice. They are shorter, so seem easier to write, but are actually more of a challenge. The discipline required to really say what needs saying in the limited space is a big deal. Every word counts. If you waste even a single panel you can throw the whole thing off.
Plus, zombies aren’t my usual genre. I’m a super hero kinda guy. Capes, powers, slug-fests and boobies, that’s my usual forte, though clearly I over simplify, and hope my hero books are more than just that. But writing outside my ‘comfort zone’ is important to me. If I really want to make as a writer, and not just of my own books, but to spend some time at Marvel or DC, I need to be adaptable. I need to know that if opportunity knocks, I’m not going look out the peep-whole and go, “A western? F--- THAT, man! I’m a one trick pony!” I want to be able to confidently open the door, shake whatever appendage opportunity has to offer (minds outta the gutter, kids!) and proclaim, “You tell me what you’re looking for, and I’ll have a draft done by the weekend!”
[Seb, man! You’re a total sell-out]
Uhm, guys. I’m a writer. There are NO sweeter words in my world than “SELL OUT” used in conjunction with my work! Besides, how do you think you get to be the kind of writer that gets all the dream gigs? Or that gets to make a comfy living writing his/her own creations? Either way, you have to prove you Can write books that are worth reading, and therefore, are worth printing. The more versatile the writer, the more books he can get published. The more books you get published, the more books you can sell. The more books you sell, the more readers you reach.
Cue Elton John: “The ciiiiiiir-cuh-uh-ile….the circle of life!”
So, yeah, I’m writing a 10 page zombie story.
Wish me luck.
You can check out the GRIM CREW’s site here.
And Martin and I are currently members of the BRICK WALLS ART STUDIO, and you can check us out here.
Cool, Seb. Congrats. Good on ya, boy!
Thanks, Forby! Both for the congrats here, and for helping to make me a better writer through Bolts & Nuts!
You're welcome, but B&N is nothing that a writer wouldn't come up with by themselves without a lot of study and application. The only thing I'm trying to do is cut down on the timeframe.
So really, it's all you. I'm just pointing things out. It's you who's applying it.
Very cool Seb. Good luck.
Hey, if someone wants a zombie story from you... you give em a zombie story! No worries there.
The zombie buzz was sort of a plus and a minus. Growing up on stuff like Evil Dead (kinda zombie-ish), Dead Alive, and the Romero films... I've been a zombie fan for a long time. Then the zombie rush (ushered in by the brilliant Dawn of the Dead re-make)... Now its like, "Oh you like zombies? that's OVER." Uhm.. okay...
Hey, just thinking: note these former zombie directors and their current/recent comic book related projects:
Sam Raimi (Evil Dead - Spider-man)
Peter Jackson (Dead Alive - Tin Tin)
Zach Snyder (Dawn of the Dead remake - I think he just did something.. uhh... well there was 300 and.. dang.. something ELSE.. can't think of WHAT though... must not have gotten much publicity)
Anyway the point is RIGHT ON SEB!
And I agree with you about the shortness. Its pretty easy for me to do my long winded mastorism story because... i have lots of room to tell it. I just wrote (and am currently drawing) a 5 pager for an anthology, and it was a frickin CHORE getting what I wanted to fit (nicely) into 5 pages...
Right on Seb!
Just give a true zombie ending!
Cool article, Sebastian. I myself have found myself writing a zombie short story. Looking into potential markets for it, however, I've read my fair share of "No zombie stories!" in various submissions guidelines pages. So I know all about the whole "That's SOOOO last year" mentality. Also check out Ethan Van Sciver's recent Newsarama column, where he traces back through decades a trend of zombies being in vogue during Republican administrations, and vampires being the in thing during Democratic administrations. It is.... bizarrely plausible.
But still, I'm gonna finish my little zombie story. Will I sell it anywhere? Probably not. But like Steve Forbes said, "The more you don't, the more you won't." And there's fewer obstacles to that "write every day" goal that are bigger than telling yourself what you're writing is a waste of time.
Best of luck with your story. Perhaps when we're both done, we can trade zombie tales!
Hmmm... aren't we gearing up for a big zombie story in comics... the BLACK LANTERNS?!?!?
And The Walking Dead is still as good as ever.