Welcome to Karen’s Killer Book Bench where, every Wednesday, readers can discover talented new authors and take a peek inside their wonderful books. This is not an age-filtered site so all book peeks are PG-13 or better. Come back and visit often. Happy reading!
DEAD: Fortunes & Failures
Back Cover Blurb….
It has been months… Steve has seen the worst in himself…and others. Now, it seems that zombies aren’t the only threat to the lives of his companions. Will he lose those he loves to the walking dead…or a murderer? Kevin is the last geek standing, and a reunion with an old acquaintance puts him back in charge of a group of survivors. Will he fail in the one thing he thought he was prepared for? Or will he find his redemption? Juan struggles with Mackenzie’s past…a scientist tries to create Eden with an unlikely Eve…and a young girl struggles to keep her sanity at the hands of a monster far worse than the ones gathered outside the walls of her family estate.
EXCERPT…DEAD: Fortunes & Failures
Almost a week had passed. Kevin had stopped being able to smell either Heather or himself a few days ago. Still, there was enough intermittent noise down below and outside to keep him from daring to venture from this dark, stuffy attic that they’d taken refuge in. The only thing he was certain of at this point was that Shaw and his men were gone.
For perhaps the thousandth time, he gave serious consideration to the shotgun sitting within reach. He’d do Heather first, then shove the barrel against the roof of his mouth. He didn’t want to leave the slightest possibility that he might merely cause serious damage. He wanted to make sure that there wasn’t enough to identify him using dental records; not that there were any dentists around anymore.
No, sir, Kevin thought, if it comes to it, I want to be VERY dead.
He shook the bottle leaning against his thigh. They would be out of water by tomorrow, even with the strictest rationing. Yesterday he’d heard it raining. Never was he more thankful for the darkness. It wouldn’t do his ego any good to have Heather see him cry. Now he was starting to hallucinate, because he was almost certain that he’d been drawn from his restless dreams by a female voice.
“Heather,” he whispered. No response. That was actually a relief. He could feel his guts churning and knew that things were about to become…unpleasant.
He could bear-crawl to the far corner that they’d designated as the toilet area. He would be able to take care of his nasty business in semi-private. Then, perhaps he might even risk taking a peek through the hatch that led to the office below.
As carefully and as quietly as possible, he made his way to the far corner. His body did things…made sounds and released smells that mortified him to the core. Once he was finished, he tore off a few strips from the shirt they’d chosen to use as toilet paper. The only thing that he felt good about at the moment was that he hadn’t puked this time.
Crawling over to the trap door, Kevin took a breath to steady his nerves and then pulled the square hatch up. He looked down into the debris-strewn corridor. His eyes took a moment to adjust to the change in light. It didn’t appear that too many zombies had made it up the stairwell that led from the bank’s lobby to the business offices above where they’d fled.
He’d gone down a few times to look around and never managed to venture farther than halfway down the stairs before retreating. He didn’t need to see. The moans and wheezes of the undead told him all he needed to know. They were in the open bank lobby in numbers too great for him and Heather to even consider fighting through. Unfortunately, they were almost out of options. Time had waited out their hand and was ready to collect. The window of opportunity to make a move was now…or never.
Lowering the knotted rope, Kevin climbed down. His arms burned from even that small effort. It was becoming more difficult each time; further proof that they had to act. They needed food and water. The thought of eating another package of Ramen noodles dry and washing it down with a few swallows of lukewarm water had no appeal.
TW Brown is the author of the Zomblog series and the Dead series. He is deeply immersed in pursuing his dream of being a “full-time” writer while trying to balance the duties of husband, father, friend, and Border Collie owner. He keeps busy reading and editing the numerous submissions for a variety of upcoming anthologies and full-length titles for May December Publications. He is a member of the Horror Writers Association and has had short stories published by Pill Hill Press, Living Dead Press, and others. You can contact him at:
firstname.lastname@example.org visit his website at www.maydecemberpublications.com. You can follow him on twitter @maydecpub and on Facebook under Todd Brown, Author TW Brown, and also under May December Publications.
Q & A with TW….
1. How did you get started writing? It has been something I have loved since grade school. I can’t recall a time I didn’t have some story or another brewing in my head.
2. What genre(s) do you write in and why? Primarily I am known for my zombie fiction, but that isn’t what I set out to do. My first full length novel is titled Dakota, and deals with two men from modern times thrown back in time to just before the start of the Civil War. One of them is Black, and they are in Charleston, SC. Most who have read it say it is my best work, and that comes from my zombie fans, so…
3. What is your favorite part of writing? Not knowing what I will do next. I never use an outline, so my stories surprise me quite often with the twists they take.
4. What is your least favorite part of writing? The endless job of edits. No matter how “clean” you think your story might be, there is always some typo or grammar faux pas that you find later. I have re-released ZOMBLOG four times thus far. I revisit my titles about once per year for a clean up. That is the only way I think the Indie scene will be taken seriously, if we take the time to improve our work in the editing department.
5. Where do you get the ideas for your stories? Honestly, they just come. I have never had writer’s block. I get ideas in strange places like walking my dog. Although, I do have the occasional nightmare that makes its way to paper.
6. What is it that makes your writing different from all the others in your genre? My zombie stories are more about the characters than they are about the monsters. There are times when I hear the Ian Malcolm character played by Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic Park whispering, “Now, you are eventually going to have zombies in your zombie story…right?” I feel I am character heavy. Also, I am dedicated to ensuring my stuff reads clean. That is why I go back and re-read, and seek out those little errors that might have slipped past. I think most writers just let go of their work once it has reached print.
7. Are you an avid reader? When you do read someone else’s writing, what is your favorite genre? I don’t think any writer worth a damn is not an avid reader. It isn’t about copying somebody else’s idea either; it is about learning your craft. The best way to improve is to always be a student of your craft and never consider yourself a master. As for who…the library in my house is vast and varied. Jasper Fforde sits by Kim Harrison. I love historical work and have a lot of William C. Davis on my Civil War shelf. Of course there are others, but I think you get the idea. I just love good stories.
8. Tell us about your next book & when is it being published? My next book is the fourth in the DEAD series, titled DEAD: Winter. It comes out on May 30th.
Now Available! DEAD series by TW Brown
LINK INFO: My Author page (which will take you to all the books I have written or edited.) : http://www.amazon.com/TW-Brown/e/B00363NQI6/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_pop_1
DEAD: The Ugly Beginning: http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Ugly-Beginning-TW-Brown/dp/1936730448
DEAD: Revelations: http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Revelations-TW-Brown/dp/1936730030
DEAD: Fortunes & Failures: http://www.amazon.com/Dead-Fortunes-Failures-TW-Brown/dp/1936730464
**SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: One lucky reader comment will be randomly chosen to receive a giveaway, a signed copy of your choice, Gruesomely Grimm Zombie Tales vol. 1, ZOMBLOG. or our anthology Eye Witness: Zombie, from TW Brown. Winner to be announced on Friday, March 16. Thanks, TW, for sharing with us!