Thursday, February 21, 2013
Zom-Rom-Com Whazzit Now?
That`s generally the first thing I hear when I tell folks I write zombie romantic comedy as well as standard Rom-Com. I can just imagine what my books do to some people’s well-defined literary and genre structure.
“But I can`t even think of what genre her work falls under! It must be a horror book, it has zombies!”
“But no, it has comedy and romance, therefore and ergo, it must be a Rom-Com.”
“Yes, but it also has gay men doing wicked and saucy things! It must be gay erotica!”
Many people will smile as if they know what I`m talking about while others, the more direct ones, will ask me what the flying *#*# I`m smoking. I`ve even had folks inform me that there is no way a story with zombies can or should be funny or romantic. I disagree.
Who says a zombie story can`t be funny? Where is it written that you can`t laugh at the undead? Did anyone inform the directors of Shaun of the Dead and Zombieland about this unwritten law barring comedy from zombie stories?
And who the heck says that romance can`t be found in a zombie story? Has anyone seen Warm Bodies since it came out, or read the book? I personally feel that any story benefits from a touch of romance and that extends to my Zom-Rom-Com books. Toss in the added goodness of gay partners being the lead and you can really throw some people into a tizzy!
Yes, you have to walk a sometimes very fine line because we are dealing with a rather squicky subject matter. The undead can be rather unattractive, and we don`t need to dwell on their rather funky body odor. Also, they do tend to be somewhat discourteous at the dining table. But, who is to say that all zombies have to be so culturally deplorable?
If you look at my two leading men in the Two Guys novellas, you won`t find anything icky or remotely squicky about Paul and Gordon. Oh no, those two are hot as hell and nary a groan or moan escapes their lips unless they`re wound in each other arms. Are my leading men zombies then you may be asking? Well, sort of but not exactly. They still have their looks, wit, and libido so they`re not the typical infected walking dead that you`d expect. What they are is two men deeply in love, carrying a possible secret inside them that just might save humanity.
Hopefully you`re as interested in a funny, sexy romp through the world of the shambling undead as I am! You can find the first part of Paul and Gordon`s story, Two Guys Walk Into An Apocalypse, in the anthology He Loves Me For My Brainsss, available now from Torquere Press. I`ve signed a contract for the first of three proposed Two Guys novellas with Torquere Press, so it shouldn`t be too long for the next installment in my Zom-Rom-Com tale to be released.
If you`d like to grab a copy of He Loves Me For My Brainsss, just click on the cover image over on the right.
For those of you who are still on the fence, how about a wee whistle whetter from the first novella that started it all? Here`s a small bit of fun with Paul and Gordon when they encounter their first wave of zombies in a Do-It-Yourself Depot store.
“I`m leaving the cart here,” Gordon whispered. A small brown sparrow flew down at us then swooped out the open door. That was a prudent thought since the doorway was blocked. I nodded in agreement then we approached the handcart with our shovels held in a defensive manner.
“Is that blood?” Gordon inquired as we neared the cart. “Shit, Paul, I think that`s blood.”
My fingers tightened on my spade. Yes, I know a shovel and a spade aren`t the same thing. Fucking sue me. I was mildly freaked out to see the splash of red covering the park bench boxes.
“I`m choosing to think that it`s redwood stain for the moment,” I whispered while placing a foot onto the cart. It dipped precariously and I quickly got both feet up to stabilize things. I craned my neck out, trying to grab a peek around the jammed door. Gordon stepped onto the cart, the handle of his shovel planted into my lower lumbar.
“It doesn`t look like stain,” he said.
“We`ll worry about that later,” I hissed, forcing the issue from my mind. Sometimes that`s a very effective way of dealing with unpleasant things. Gordon has pointed out, more times than is actually needed in my humble, that all I need do is add ‘Fiddle-Dee-Dee’ onto the end of my refusal to ponder upsetting ideas. Personally I tend to envision myself more as Ashley Wilkes than Miss O’Hara. Gowns made out of drapes don`t look good on me. Don`t ask how I know that.
“It`s stain. Now, let`s just focus on finding the drunk and lending Rusty a hand, shall we?!”I sounded tarter than I had intended and quickly whispered an apology.
Gordon shuffled behind me, his weight now shifting forward as he too tried to peer around the stalled door. We both jerked backwards when something flew past us. It was not a sparrow of that I was sure. It sailed right under our noses and hit one of three neatly stacked half wooden barrels with a splat. Eyes round as saucers I saw it was a severed human hand missing the thumb. Gordon`s pleasant weight left my back instantly as my mind tried to decide if I should scream or vomit.
Bile rose up the back of my esophagus. Vomiting had won it seemed. Swallowing like a hippopotamus with a soccer ball stuck in its throat, I danced backwards, stumbling from the cart in reverse. Gordon shouted. I whirled around, spade trembling wildly, to see a heavy-set woman pawing my man. I knew who she was. It was Ruth, the effervescent older woman who sometimes meets shoppers with a smile and a free cup of coffee in the vestibule. Yes, I know her name as well. Get over it. Gordon`s eyes were wide, his hand was wound in her tousled hair as he struggled to get away from the hussy.