Posts Tagged ‘zombies’

 

Hey.

Yep, that’s me.

Watch the above video if you want to know things like:

  1. When is book 3 in the Savannah Zombie Novel series coming out?
  2. What has Josh Vasquez been up to?
  3. And what does he have planned for the Savannah Zombie Novel universe?

All these things and more, in video format, so you don’t have to read!

Which is kind of weird when you think about, because you’re most likely here because you like to read…

Hmm… I guess I didn’t think this all the way through…

 

Anyways, enjoy the video and don’t forget to leave a comment letting me know what you think, either here or on YouTube!

 

Josh Vasquez

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Here’s the first part of  A New Death: CJ’s Story, the audiobook version. You can read along with the free ebook available here.

This short story set in the Savannah Zombie Novel universe takes place at the same time as the first entry, A New Death. It focuses in on thirteen year old CJ and his family, who appear in A New Darkness. This story bridges books 1 and 2.

Huh?

What’s this?

A preview of A New Daybreak‘s  prologue?

 

SAY WHAT?!?

Okay, enough joshing around, (See what I did there?) here it is:

 

Prologue

I am walking down a dark road.
It is nighttime and there is blood on my hands.
Not figuratively.
I look down and my hands are slick with blood.
whose blood
I… I cannot remember.
It is fresh, warm. It smells of rot and there is a metallic taste in my mouth.
Like the taste of a copper penny.
Something dribbles from the corner of my mouth, but I do not care.
I am dead.

But I am not at the same time.

I look down again and I see that my legs are moving. My feet shuffle awkwardly, as if asleep.
wake up feet wake up
I giggle at this, but the air escapes my mouth in an arid gasp.
A moan follows it. A groaning I feel escape from deep within my gut.
I am hungry.
so fucking hungry
I remember eating recently. Something tough shifts between my dry gums. I work my jaw in an effort to free whatever is in my mouth. It touches my cracked tongue.
meat
The feeling of the HUNGER surges throughout my body. It fills every ounce of me, my very essence one of desire and bloodlust. I must feed.
Soon.
I beg my feet to pick up their pace. They are resistant at first, but the HUNGER reaches them as well and they soon stumble into a light jog.
I feel every snapping tendon. Every dry grinding joint. For some reason, I think I should be feeling something, but again, I cannot remember. Some kind of bodily warning that I am harming myself, some indicator of distress.
what is the word what is the word what is the word
I hear a snap.
My hip wobbles and I tumble forward, the ground rushing up to stop my face. My left arm flies up to slow my fall, but I hear another crack.
My wrist breaks and my face slams into the concrete. The fall would have broken my nose.
If I had one.
It is missing. It was taken from me by… I cannot remember.
The HUNGER ripples throughout my veins. It rides on the coagulated sludge that once was my blood.
I slowly push my way up using the stump of arm where my hand dangles freely. A strand of rubbery flesh tethers it to my wrist, swinging back and forth, back and forth.
I giggle again and again it comes forth as a moan.
must feed must feed must feed
The HUNGER does not take long to remind me of the emptiness in my stomach. As if I forgot. I look down and notice a gaping hole in my abdomen. Something long and slippery sways from the opening. It reminds me of
meat meat meat
Minutes pass, but the HUNGER makes them feel like hours. Every creaking of bone a ticking of the second hand.
tick tick tick eat eat eat
I black out.
I come to. I am still walking. My hand has fallen off somewhere. I do not care.
While I was out, my body had been busy marching towards the smell of food. A breeze carried the scent of burnt wood and warm flesh.
I am getting close.
I pass through trees and come into a small clearing. The pale orb in the sky lights the grove.
A triangular shape sits in the middle of the grove and smoke rises from a smoldering pile of ash.
The HUNGER aches within me as I make my way towards the tent.
I tremble with joy as I look inside and see a man asleep.
He has not heard me.
He is dressed in orange. Black markings across his back.
I cannot read them. I do not remember how.
I fall forward onto him. He wakes, but his struggle is futile as my jagged teeth tear into his cheek.
I feel pure glee as his hot blood fills my mouth.
He is screaming, but I do not care. My teeth open for another bite, but then stop.
not right not right not right
Something is wrong.
He tastes different.
Not like the others.
oh no oh no oh no
In my hesitation, the man shoves me back and I fall through the opening. I hit the ground hard, laying there for a minute looking up at the twinkling lights above me.
“What have you done?!” The man bellows.
He is now standing over me, his massive frame towering over me.
“WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?!”
I roll to my side in an attempt to escape, but something hits me hard in the back and I begin to tumble across the ground. As I circle around, I see the bottom of the man’s foot where my back was.
I have attacked other men before this one. Normally they came at me with sharp metal objects, or in some cases, their hands held a tool that made the sound of thunder.
That’s it.
That was why I have the hole in my stomach.
This man held nothing.
His hands were bare just like mine.
just like you just like you
“I’m not like the others you’ve eaten…”
He holds his hand up to the bite wound I left on his face.
He smiles.
“They did something to us. Something… wrong.”
I try to get up and leave again, but quickly he is on top of me. His fists begin to pummel my face. I hear the skull fragmenting inside my head. Bone splinters, my already piss-poor vision becoming blurrier.
He stops and backs off, clutching at his side. He yells in pain and his muscles begin to bulge through his orange jumpsuit. The fabric begins to tear as his flesh contorts. His eyes blaze red.
Something is inside me. I look down to see the man’s hands deep into my belly, pulling the opening wider and allowing for more of my guts to spill onto the ground.
oh well
The man yanks out the remains of my insides and steps back again, this time admiring his handiwork. The muscles in his neck continue to grow, his skin splitting and cracking at the pressure.
“You see deadhead,” the man continues, his voice now deeper and coarser. “I was already dead before you entered the tent.”
And with that, he slammed his fist into my head and my skull finally gave way.
I welcomed the darkness.

 

 

 

So, what did you think? Let me know in the comments! Now to go finish the rest of the book!

 

Josh

A few years ago, I talked my nephew and niece into making a zombie movie.

They were like, “Heck yeah!”

So, we set out to make one.

Oh, but I forgot to mention: They had never seen a zombie movie.

This is what we got:

Riveting, I know.

Obviously, they have no acting training and I gave them little direction, just to see what they would do. My niece, Hailey, came up with the stiff-leg walk. Why? I don’t know, but it freaking works. I think it really represents the way we somber through life and the choices we make that lead up to the catalysts of life-change and…

Um…

Ok, I just thought it was funny.

Anyways, this movie isn’t Savannah Zombie Novel related, just something fun I thought I’d share with y’all. Let me know what you think and share with your friends!

Prologue to A New Daybreak coming soon!

DoSavannah article

 

That’s me in our local paper’s DoSavannah section, which features local music and happenings each week.

No big deal.

Haha, jk. It’s weird though, because this is the first time I’ve really put my work out there locally. My books have been in several local bookstores, but unless someone just walked in there, they would have no idea my books exist.

Sad, I know.

But now, “real” people know about my books, not just “internet” people. (No offense.)

Anyways, this was a really cool start to the new year and as I get back on track with A New Daybreak, this really gives me motivation to press forward. I just shared the Prologue with my email list (which you should join by the way and get a free ebook) and will continue to share sneak peeks with them until release day.

You can read the article here and you should probably share it on social media, because it’s 2016 people and that means it’s the future.

The future people.

Alright, now back to writing.

 

Josh

So, how’s it going?

(pauses for effect)

That good, huh? Well, I’m doing FANTASTIC!

Last year, I attended the Savannah Zombie Walk, but the event was moved to April, so I will be doing a book signing on Halloween instead. It will be at E. Shaver, Bookseller, which is a cool local bookstore in downtown Savannah. (I say cool, because there are other local bookstores, who are, um… not so cool.)

Anyways, from 3-5 PM on October 31st, I will be hanging out at the bookstore which is located at 326 Bull St. Come stop by, pick up an autographed copy of A New Death, and just hang out with some cool book people!

SigningPoster

 

Hey, I finally got around to finishing all three parts of A New Death: CJ’s Story audiobook! Here’s all three parts! Enjoy!

Josh

Non-Kindle owners rejoice!

The first book in the Savannah Zombie Novel series is now available for both Barnes & Noble’s Nook and Kobo’s line of eReaders!

A New Death is no longer Kindle-exclusive, so now more people can get in on the Savannah Zombie action!

Click on the Books link above or on the links below to go to your preferred eReaders site!

kindle-logoNook_logokobo_logo_FINALPMS

The rest of the series will be making its way soon! And if you can’t wait until then, don’t forget you can always buy the paperback versions!

A New Death Cover 2.0

Right now you can get Book 1 in the Savannah Zombie Novel Series for FREE on your Amazon Kindle!

This promo will last for FIVE days, so now would be a good time to pick it up if you haven’t read it yet! If you have, then now would be a great time to tell your friends!

Here’s what some readers have said about A New Death on Amazon:

“When you read A New Death,I think you will be shocked to learn that it is the authors first novel. The story is well written and has a good quick pace. It is surprisingly upbeat for a zombie apocalypse novel. I enjoyed it and definitely recommend it.” -J. Meister

“I can’t believe this is the authors first book. Very well written and flowed great. You Mr. Vasquez are a gifted story teller. I really enjoyed the character development, I could not put this book down I think this is the fastest I’ve read a book.”- Jesse E.

“Josh Vasquez has done a fine job for his first effort. The characters grab your attention and pull you along with them. This is very much a character driven tale and it works well. Plenty of zombie action and questions to answer. I am looking forward to the next installment.” – Belle Rouge

“Easy to read and entertaining. Fast moving. I Looking forward to the next book! Perhaps the Bible talk may be a turn off for some but so far it was tolerable.” – Amazon Customer

“one of the better zombie books I’ve read in awhile! fast paced, great characters…Loved lexx! really hope there is a sequel!! hoping for more from this author!” – Lisa Cook

“This is a bit different from other zombie books. There are the usual slow ones and some runners. What makes it different is that the bitten change into muscle bound rage monsters. While this not the best book I have ever read it certainly isn’t the worst. It’s a good first book.” – ladyboss230

“Josh Vasquez obviously found his calling in writing a zombie novel, keep up the great work!! A can’t put down read!” – Debra Ryan

That’s just a few people’s opinion. You can make yours by either clicking the picture above or by clicking here.

I hope y’all enjoy!

Josh

left4deadWe made it to the rooftop. I looked at the three others in our small ragtag group. We were exhausted, but our spirits were high. Even old man Bill had a smile on his face as he lit one of his last cigarettes. The helipad radio had fired to life only minutes ago and the voice of maybe the last helicopter pilot in the city came through it. He was willing to pick us up. We just had to wait.

We crossed the city in pretty good time by my guess. Even the detour through the sewers didn’t slow us down much. It was gross, but it didn’t kill our time. The climb up to the roof of Mercy Hospital, well that was a different story. If it hadn’t been for that damn witch sitting in the middle of the hallway, we’d have been alright.

I hate witches.

Louis took the blunt of her attack, but once she was down for good, we put our medpacs together and fixed him up. It’s amazing what a little pills will do for ya.

It was then I heard the first scream.

The infected were coming.

One scream was met was met with another and then another, until a whole chorus of undead filled the night’s air. We didn’t have long.

Thankfully, the Army left us a cache of weapons on the rooftop terrace. The city had been full of last-ditch efforts by our military to arm survivors. They may have not had the resources to evac everyone, but at least they had enough sense to give us a fighting chance.

A lot better than CEDA did us.

I hate CEDA.

But the Army? I could kiss the first soldier I see. They left us a nice little gift on the roof.

A freaking chain gun.

I LOVE chain guns.

We loaded what ammo we could into our guns and into our pockets just as the first wave of zombies showed up. Fighting the undead had become pretty standard procedure. It was the damn special ones you had to watch out for.

As if they were reading my mind, they began showing up. A tongue-tentacle wrapped around Zoey and began pulling her towards the edge of the roof.

“Francis, help!”

I aimed my shotgun for the pulled tight tongue first. One blast severed the nasty thing, freeing the young girl. My eyes followed the writhing appendage back to its owner, but he was out of range for my shotgun. I’d just tickle him if I tried shooting.

“Zoey, there!” I yelled, pointing toward the fleeing Smoker.

She trained her rifle on the wheezing freak and sent him packing in a cloud of ash. Zoey gave me the thumbs up and turned her attention back to the zombie horde.

The ground began to shake.

The whole building began to shake.

“TAAANNNNNNKKKK!”

I ran for the chain gun. Louis began peppering the massive beast with fire from his assault rifle. We encountered one of these things before and it was hell to put it down. The chain gun should help that.

I reached the chain gun and grinned as I launched lead towards the monster.

The towering mass of muscle seemed to absorb the bullets like lotion. The nagging thought in the back of my head saying the chain gun wouldn’t do the trick began screaming. I ignored it.

The beast had its tiny eyes fixed on me. It ran, its giant arms pumping it forward like a gorilla on cocaine. The barrels on the minigun began to glow red, but I didn’t let off.

The blinking light of a pipe bomb arced through the air and landed mere feet from the approaching Tank. It exploded, causing the Tank to stumble and fall. It fell to the ground and came to a sliding stop.

It was dead.

I think we all breathed a collective sigh of relief.

The sound of whirring helicopter blades broke the silence.

“Helicopter’s here! Everybody to the chopper!” Bill yelled.

We all began running as more infected began to pile onto the roof. It was as if they knew rescue was here for us and they weren’t gonna let us leave.

The building began to shake again.

I watched as another Tank appeared and separated me from the group. I ran, away from the helicopter, away from the Tank. It was so close behind me I could feel its stench.

There was loud wet smack as I felt my backside give in. The hit sent me flying through the air.

Ten feet. Twenty feet. Thirty feet, until finally, I was away from the hospital roof, staring at the black streets below me.

I am sure my back was broken. Everything hurt. It wouldn’t hurt for long though. The ground was quickly rushing up to put an end to all that.

 

You are dead.

 you are dead

 

I stared at the computer monitor as it taunted me with the game over screen before the game reset and sent me back to the beginning of the level.

“You gotta be freaking kidding me…”

I could not believe I just made it all the way through the No Mercy campaign only to die in the finale. And not just die, mind you, but to be FREAKING PUNCHED OFF THE ROOF!

This was roughly what happened to me the first time I played Left 4 Dead.

And I loved it.

When I bought the game, it was relatively new and I’d never heard of it. I liked zombies and thought the description on the back of the game box sounded fun, so I decided to give it a whirl.

And man, I’m glad I did.

Left 4 Dead puts you in the middle of the zombie apocalypse with three other people. You must use teamwork and strategy in order to survive. The gameplay is basic: Get from Point A to Point B without dying. Repeat.

That’s it. And as far as story goes, there’s a short intro video when the game boots up, but that’s it.

Or so it seems.

While Left 4 Dead may not seem so concerned with story, it actually is. But rather than give elaborate backstory or thrilling cut scenes, it allows to the story to unfold in a different manner.

It allows you, the player, to tell the story. And each story is different.

Left 4 Dead has gameplay AI (artificial intelligence) called “The Director.” The Director will basically watch how you play the game and then adjust gameplay according to your style.

Like to take your time and be stealthy? He’s gonna send a zombie horde your way.

Breezing through the level pretty quick? Oh, here’s a Tank.

Low on health? Try getting past this Witch in the narrow hallway.

It is the Director’s job to make you sweat.

And here’s where I get to storytelling:

Even though it’s the same game, same levels, you never really play the same game twice.

And that’s awesome.

It’s kind of like those “Choose Your Own Adventure” books we read when we were kids. (Remember those?)

You get to tell your own story.

And then there’s the water cooler moments, or as I like to call them, “Holy Crap, did that just happen?” moments. Like the time a Tank punched me off the roof in the No Mercy finale. Or the time I accidently shot a car with a car alarm and alerted the horde. Or the time I snuck up behind a cowering Witch without alerting her and killed her in one shot.

There’s all these cool little moments in the game that just add to the overall gameplay. For me, these are all about the story. It these “Holy Crap” moments that push us forward and keep us wanting more.

I try to incorporate moments like this into my books. Things that when you read them, you simply have no choice but to keep reading and find out what happens next. You may know them by another name: cliffhangers. (Breaking Bad fans will be familiar with these, but they may refer to them as “the end of an episode.”)

With a simple backstory and awesome things to tell your friends about later (maybe near a water cooler), Left 4 Dead oozes with story. It may just not be like you’re use to.

left4dead-rooftop