This novel is a work of fiction. All of the characters, places, and events are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, locales, businesses or events is entirely coincidental.
These words, or some variation, are at the beginning of every piece of fiction. Whether it be a book, a TV show, or movie. So is it a coincidence that one of the characters or events in my book reminds you of yourself. Definitely not. It would be near impossible to write a character that people would care about if they did not have actions and responses that we can relate too. So when I created the characters of my novel, each one is based on a friend. Then I put them in situations and let them react the way I think they would when faced with that challenge.
Basing a character on someone you know makes it easier for you to keep their actions consistent. You can picture them in your mind and you know what they would do. Well, I think I know how they would react in the zombie apocalypse. This keeps things simple when fleshing out characters and developing them into heroes. You can use your personal experiences with their real life counter part to shape the encounters that they have with their surrounding environment. So far, I have only used friends as heroes, or in some cases the poor unsuspecting victims of zombie attacks. So to those friends that have fell victim to a zombie and became a meal for the undead, it was for a good cause. It’s just something I do to help readers connect with the characters and during the zombie apocalypse, some people just won’t make it. So why did I choose you to die? Don’t be offended, it doesn’t mean I don’t like you. Every character is a nod to a friend, someone who has an impact on my life. They say imitation is the highest form of flattery.
I base my villains on a collaboration of TV and movie characters that have made an memorable impression on me. While it is easy to picture the villains from one of my novels, this approach has made it difficult to get attached to them. They act like a well known acting portraying a role in a movie in which they are not suited for, just because they played the evil heel role in another movie and made you hate them. You want to hate them, you know you should hate them but you don’t.
This has been a dilemma for my second novel. Cookie cutter bad guys just aren’t cutting it any more. I’ve begun using friends to shape the villainous characters in my second novel, Zombies on the Rock 2: The Viking Trail. If you find yourself becoming the villain, it’s because I know that your somebody who can take a joke. Some people are just better suited to be evil, so I’m going to have to kill you off. Don’t be offended.