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Hey guys! Some of you may not know this, but I'm an author. I write books! Yay for books! And one of the books I'm currently working on is of the zombie/dystopian/werewolf variety!
I love reading zombie books and watching shows like The Walking Dead. Blood and guts, survival, all that fun stuff? It's sort of my thing. The same goes for dystopian stuff and werewolf stuff. It sets my teeth on edge, causing me a fantastic sort of anxiety - I know, that sounds funny even to my own ears...err, eyes, I guess, since this is an article.
Let me break it down for you:
- Zombies are terrifying, and watching them get killed can either be sad, if it's a character you've grown fond of for example, or exciting. They're dead, and they're gonna eat you. I mean, ew, no thanks, I'd rather not be eaten or turned into the eater.
- Werewolf stories are great because they deal with the same sort of theme (you know, human becoming other) but in an animalistic sense. You're not becoming entirely a monster in some stories, but shifting into an animal! That's cool, and creepy, and honestly for it to work you'd have to turn into a wolf the same size and approximate weight of your human self, making adjustments for change is species. I can hear Jessie Pinkman yelling "Science Bitch!" as I write this.
- I've already examined in a previous article why dystopian stories are the bomb! Pun intended...because post-apocalypse...(MY MOM THINKS I'M FUNNY, OKAY?) I'll give you the highlights though:
- We don't want our world to end up like the one in the dystopian story
- We walk away with a sense of, "I want to keep the world from becoming this way!"
- Okay, we might want some of it, but the cool science stuff, not the evil fake utopia stuff. Nope. Non merci!
So, what do you get when you combine the three? I wanted to find out. So, I started writing two stories set in the same world, Only the Dead, and Grit.
Only the Dead
The first, Only the Dead, is about a girl who lives in the Republic of Socius, a walled-in city run by the maniacal Lucas Wintle. The inhabitants are fed a false history, believing that they are the only survivors of an awful plague that wiped out most of humanity. The Main Character, Kaya, falls in love with a boy from outside the city, a forbidden inhabitant seeking medical help for his cancer-ridden younger sister. Kaya was led to believe that diseases like cancer had been eradicated, and soon she learns of other things that the Republic of Socius has been keeping a secret, the biggest and most deadly being Anima Mortem; this is the disease that truly wiped out most of the world, and the disease that Lucas Wintle is desperately trying to find the cure for.
Here is the false history as told by fake magazine clippings in the History of Socius, which is distributed to every citizen:
Doctor Myron Lug has made a discovery that will change man-kind forever. He has taken in-vitro fertilization to a whole other level and he has finally perfected the artificial womb, something scientists have been working on for a very long time. This gives the foetus a chance to develop in a space where it is not exposed to disease, alcohol or basically anything that may harm it if it were being naturally carried. This also makes choosing gender, hair colour, height and all of that easier, because the foetus can be taken out of the artificial womb and operated on if anything is not going according to plan. It’s as simple as a few tweaks here and another there. There has been some controversy as to whether or not it is ethical to create life this way, and to be able to decide the appearance of your ‘unborn’ child, but Lug says, “Why not choose? Why not make sure your baby looks like you, or doesn’t look like you, if that’s what you want. You can create the perfect child, suited to your needs. This is revolutionary!”
This raises the question, will sex for reproduction become obsolete? Lug says no, not as long as people still want to have children the “good old fashioned way” but many people are not so sure. Will sex now only be used as a form of recreation?
Three years after its discovery, the act of conceiving via artificial womb, AW-IVF, has become very popular. More and more women are choosing the different means of contraceptives, and are having their children the AW-IVF way. Myron Lug is among the richest people alive.
A new law is being debated today. Apparently, scientists have deemed it unsafe to have children naturally. It poses too many health risks for mother and child. More and more mothers are dying because of a new disease; it’s a strain of the pox virus that especially affects the elderly, the immune-deficient, women who are with child, and children up to the age of about twelve. There is, however, a vaccine being developed, so this law seems a little much. How could it be illogical to have children the way we are supposed to?
Sex for procreation is finally obsolete- the law to ban natural birthing has been passed after much controversy in the last year. Many people are still not happy with this law, but it has been passed and that is the end of it. The virus is fast spreading, and we need healthy babies now more than ever, as the vaccine has not been perfected yet, but Doctor Lug says he has jumped onto the bandwagon and is working hard to help find the solution. We can have as many babies the AW-IVF way as we want but the babies being born are still not safe, children are still not safe, and the elderly are still not safe.
The pox plague has finally spread throughout all of North America and select places in Europe, South America, and Africa. Where is the promised vaccination, the one we have been waiting seven years for? Scientists say they are working hard at trying to eradicate the virus, but they have found no new information on how to do so. Doctor Myron Lug, the creator of the artificial womb, has been getting death threats by way of telephone and angry letters sent to his house because the people are up in arms that he hasn’t found the cure yet. He says that this does not bother him, but one wonders if he really is doing anything at all to stop the virus. He says he’s developing the cure, but it’s been seven years, and our numbers are dwindling.
A cure has finally arrived thanks to Doctor Myron Lug and his son, Avery Lug. Avery bravely volunteered to be part of a study that included being infected by the pox plague to go under observation, and as it turns out, he is immune to the virus, having almost died from chicken pox as a small child. From his own son’s blood, Myron Lug was able to create the cure.
It is a sad day today, as we grieve the sudden death of Myron Lug, creator of the artificial womb and founder of the pox-plague cure. He graciously left everything to his son, Avery, who was recently elected Prime Minister.
Mark Wintle, our newest Prime Minister, has decreed that touching the opposite sex for any reason unless you are directly related (full blooded siblings) is strictly illegal as it is illogical. Of course this is all for the greater good, and it makes sense completely, seeing as touching the opposite sex has been known to cause severe anxiety in many people. Remember, “If you are healthy you are happy, and if you are happy you are more efficient!”
Lukas Wintle is our new Prime Minister, after the untimely death of his father. He has introduced the match program, a pet project of his father's. People will no longer have to worry about choosing a suitable life partner for themselves from the full population; instead their choices will be narrowed down to about five people.
The second, Grit, starts outside of the city. The protagonist, Micah, has only even known life on the outside. She is fully aware of the dead, because one has to be constantly on the move, has to stay alive. One day, she is captured by Lukas Wintle's Raiders, a task force dedicated to gathering outsiders and testing for possible cures in their blood. At first, she tries to fight, but eventually gives in and becomes a Raider herself seeing as she's not allowed to ever go back to her family again - but then one day, she is forced to test the blood of a boy named William, whose blood is not entirely human; it contains animal DNA, and everybody knows that animals are immune to Anima Mortem.
Here's an excerpt:
Blood is strange. It flows throughout every living being, keeping our hearts beating so that they can pump out the beat of our soul’s songs, sending the blood throughout our bodies on its life-sustaining journey. As soon as our hearts stop beating, the blood should slowly still in the shell that once held a so-called soul. It will clot inside of our veins; the water that was so vital to our existence evaporating from our bodies. We become pale in some places, mottled with reds blues and greens where the blood pools and our eyes will cloud over, no longer judges to the damaged world that we once called home. But the dead don’t always stay dead anymore, thanks to the Virus. They rise up as if they are living, but they are not- they’re just decomposing on their feet. The infected dead walk in jerky, ungraceful steps and their running is awkward and stilted. They do not talk, they just make primal moans and grunts, and they eat pretty much anything as long as it’s got blood flowing through its veins.
Animals cannot be affected by Anima Mortem, though. Once bitten, they either die from blood loss or die because they’ve been completely devoured and some of them (though rare) get away and keep on living- with battle wounds but still otherwise alive. People used to call the infected zombies. They had stories about the living dead that they told for entertainment because most didn’t realize that it was a very real thing that could happen. Of course, there were those that prepped for the end of the world, those that feared an unknown end. Would it be those so called zombies that would be the end of humanity as they knew it? Would it be Earth’s climate? Or would it be war? It was all three, in a complete clusterfuck of epic proportions.
You see where I'm headed, right? I plan to have the third book in both MC's POV's, with lots of action, and maybe...a cure? Who knows. The possibilities are endless. Will I keep you updated? You betchya!
So, I hope you enjoyed a tidbit of how the heck my mind works!