Most people’s midlife crises result in the purchase of an overpriced sports car or a poorly placed tattoo. Well, my midlife crisis lead to the writing and publication of a zombie novel (I have neither the money nor the personality for a sports car). I decided to sit down and write my book the month before I turned thirty because I thought that I should try to accomplish something before I hit the big 3-0. I know most people experience midlife crises in their fifties, but I have a strong feeling I won’t make it past sixty (what with the impending zombie apocalypse and all).
I have always wanted to write a book, and since I’m infatuated with zombies, I figured that I should write about the zombie apocalypse (I might as well have fun while I’m writing, no?). I had an idea about a character that’s completely obsessed with zombies, so much so that it has taken over this person’s life. My character, Jordan, has been preparing for the zombie apocalypse since childhood and is ecstatic when the zombies finally invade. I wanted to write about a character that wants to help people. In too many zombie stories, most of the characters just look out for themselves and their loved ones. But people don’t usually go out of their way to help strangers. My novel is about a friendly lunatic whose dream is to save the world from zombies.
I started writing my novel on August 4th, 2012, and I finished right before my thirtieth birthday on September 4th. I woke up every morning at 5:00 and wrote for two hours before going into the office. It was hard work, but I loved every minute of it. Writing about zombies is so much fun, and I learned a lot about preparing for a zombie invasion. Some people plan for retirement, while others plan for the zombie apocalypse. I’m not saying that IRAs are a bad idea, but when the zombies invade, you’ll be much happier with your bug-out bag and survival supplies (those stocks aren’t going to do you any good).
I digress. So I finished writing my novel, and then I edited. And edited. And edited. It only took me one month to write the book, but I spent five months on editing. Once I was finally happy with my novel, I thought I should at least attempt to get it published. I bought a few books on how to find an agent and how to get a publishing deal. Turns out, it’s not that easy. So instead of sending my book to agents and getting countless rejection letters, I decided to skip the hassle and go directly to self-publishing (it’s all the rage these days).
I’ve read dozens of self-published zombie books, and there are some great ones out there (check out my article on my five favorite self-published zombie books: https://www.zombie-guide.com/top-five-indie-zombie-books/). I recommend self-publishing to anyone who’s trying to get their first book published. It’s a great way to get started! My novel, “Jordan’s Brains: A Zombie Evolution,” is finally finished, and it should be available in a few weeks.