Zombie Zone News Repost: Scott Kenemore

 

Scott Kenemore  is a zombie author who needs no introduction.  That’s why I’m not going to bother telling you that he has written satirical zombie tomes on such divergent topics as Buddhism, Corporate Living, Pirates, Nazi’s, and the myriad ways in which human wars can take a cue from the undead.  He is a zombie satirist, novelist, commentator, and go-to-guy; and belongs to both the Zombie Research Society, and the Horror Writers Association. 

Luckily for us, he is also a fascinating cat!  

 

WLF/ZZN:  Hi!  Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions.  You’ve been called an emerging authority in the field of zombies.  What’s that like?

Hi Zombie Zombie News, and thank you for interviewing me.  I don’t know if I’m an authority exactly, but it is fun to be a zombie-writer and it’s a pleasure to get to meet other people who are enthusiastic about zombie culture!  I enjoy talking to folks about their favorite zombie movies and books, and aspects of the undead they find interesting.

 

WLF/ZZN:  Now that the CDC has admitted a zombie outbreak is inevitable, are you now on their speed-dial?  Do you encourage the CDC to network with the Zombie Research Society?

Sometimes life imitates art, dude.  The CDC and the ZRS might actually have something brewing.  I’ll let Matt Mogk (President of the ZRS) tell you more when he’s ready to make an announcement. .

 

WLF/ZZN:  You write poetry as well as prose.  Care to share a filthy limerick or undead Haiku with us?

I can seldom resist a request for an extempore limerick.  Here you go:

 

There once was a writer named Kenemore,

(Much less famous than Cooper, James Fenimore).

He wrote about zombies,

And once wore Abercrombie,

But he doesn’t shop at the mall anymore.

 

Ta-da.

 

WLF/ZZN:  I’d love to hear about your introduction to zombie culture.  When was it?  Were your parents complicit, or did you do it on the sly?

I really got into zombies in college.  I had some friends who introduced me to Romero films, and I was hooked.  I remember Day of the Dead and Dawn of the Dead making big impressions on me.  I also liked a lot of the older black and white zombie films, like the stuff Mantan Moreland did.  And Return of the Living Dead by Dan O’Bannon was and is my all-time favorite zombie film.  (WLF note: Talking zombies?!?  You’re killing me here, Kenemore! **Snerk**)

 

WLF/ZZN:  Your book, The Art of Zombie Warfare is chock-full of ways to use zombies to your advantage.  Isn’t there an inherent danger to making zombie proliferation seem desirable?

Ha!  Danger to whom?  Seriously though, I think there are a lot humans can learn from zombies, and this is definitely true when it comes to warfare.  Zombies are inveterate, fearless soldiers who kill without compunction.  They can adapt to any landscape, and never retreat or surrender.

 

WLF/ZZN:  As a writer with a day-job, I was particularly moved by Z.E.O.: A Zombie’s Guide to Getting (A)Head in Business.  When did you first realize the connection between the walking undead and being a faceless corporate slug?

The idea of zombie employees gets used in a lot of horror media, but it is usually a one-off.  For example, there are zombie sugar cane workers in White Zombie and zombie construction workers in Cast a Deadly Spell, but in neither instance are the ins-and-outs of a zombie labor force explored in any depth.  One of the things I wanted to do in Z.E.O. was to take a closer look at the undead/employee connection.

 

WLF/ZZN:  You are also a drummer in a band where all the members appear to be alive.  Seems an odd choice for someone like yourself.  Please tell us about your musical goings on.

Alas, undead bandmates are not always available.  When this troubling situation presents itself, I am forced to make do with the living. 

I’ve played the drums since I was ten years old, and I now I play in a Chicago-based rock band called The Blissters.  I am also working on a zombie novel that has drummer in it. 

 

WLF/ZZN:  The word “imponderable” is the best thing ever.  I presume you are doing your best to bring it back into the vernacular.  How’s that going?

Imponderable is a pretty cool word, no doubt.  I got it from cosmic-horror writers like H.P. Lovecraft and Kelly Link.

 

WLF/ZZN:  You’ve compared the zombie mentality to an ingenious plan by Alexander Hamilton.  Does this make Aaron Burr the greatest zombie hunter in history?

Aaron Burr: Zombie Hunter  is Seth Grahame-Smith’s next book, I think.

 

WLF/ZZN:  Your books often speak highly of the zombie mindset, and of zombies in general.  You’ve even asserted that zombies are misunderstood.  This leads me to ask, with all due respect, who’s side are you on?

The side of the zombies.  (WLF note: <i>F*CK!</i>)

 

WLF/ZZN:  You’ve said that Zombies are the opposite of Vampires.  With that in mind, what it your opinion on a milieu like ‘Salem’s Lot, where the vampires are extremely zombie-like?

That’s a good question, actually.  There are quite a few monsters on page and film (and video games) that conflate aspects of zombies and vampires.  I’m all for experimentation personally.  There are a lot of bad versions, sure, but novels like ‘Salem’s Lot show just how effective experimentation can be.  Personally, I like the zombie/vampire variations in the Left 4 Dead videogame series.  They are scary and fun.

 

WLF/ZZN:  George Romero theorizes that zombies on the whole will evolve (or would it be devolve) and become more human.  Agree or disagree?

Romero is to zombies what Stoker is to vampires.  If anybody has a case for zombies evolving, it’s him.  I’m inclined to agree with the master.

 

WLF/ZZN:  You’ve asserted that human survival during a zombie apocalypse is impossible.  Does this mean that you don’t have a zombie survival plan?

I have a plan, it’s just not a survival plan.  It’s a plan for fun.

 

WLF/ZZN: What exactly is your plan?

It would be fun to see how long I could hold out, and how many zombies I could set on fire at once.  My plan is to take a bunch of Molotov cocktails to the roof of my building, and throw them down on the masses of zombies below.  Awesome.

 

WLF/ZZN:  I love that you’ve progressed from how-to books to narratives.  Do you prefer novels to satire books? 

I like them both, and I like works that combine the two.  Terry Pratchett is one of my favorite living writers, and he has been a tremendous model for me when it comes to satirical fiction.  (Pratchett also writes some great zombie characters in his Discworld novels.)

 

WLF/ZZN:  Your novel Zombie, Ohio suggests that zombies can sometimes overcome their desire to consume human flesh.  Is this normal, or something that would typically get the Professor’s ass kicked by his undead peers?

What I wanted to explore with that aspect of Zombie, Ohio was not the experience of being a typical zombie, but of being an atypical zombie.  I’d been reading how one out of every 100,000 people can display immunity to a virus, and I wanted to extend that to a zombie virus.  How would that apply to the walking dead?  What if a tiny fraction of one percent of people who become zombified experience it very slightly differently?

 

WLF/ZZN:  Would you say that Zombie Zone News is a vital resource for zombie aficionados? 

Zombie Zone News is a kickass website and a true pillar of the zombie community.

 

WLF/ZZN:  Where will your passion for zombies be taking you next?

I have a few projects in the works.  Among them is a new zombie novel set in Chicago.

 

WLF/ZZN:  Anything you’d like to say to your oodles of fans?

I’m surprised that I have oodles of fans!

 

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