Now a sceptic might ask that, as both of these events occurred in America, might this not be less of a zombie holocaust, and more of a natural progression of a culture based entirely upon worship of slaughter and violence?
A colleague of mine was trawling the internet last week when he stumbled upon a recently-published children’s novel entitled Horrid Henry and the Zombie Vampire. He was struck by the title, fearing that this novel might be an unauthorised re-working of my own story,Vambie Zompire: The End of Days, and so immediately alerted me. Had I fallen victim to plagiarism (again)?
Based solely on the title of the novel I understood why my friend had raised the plagiarism alarm. However, even though I had not read it, I must say I did not share his concerns that my Vambie Zompire idea had been ripped off for the story.
As I pointed out to him, even if the author was pushing the boundaries of what is acceptable, it was very unlikely that a publisher would release a children’s novel centred around a night-long supernatural slaughter-fest, featuring rectal-impalement, brain-eating, and one instance of suffocation by dismembered testicles.
The Hugo Awards, the Nebula Awards, SFX Magazine, the International Horror Guild, the Geffen Award, what do they all have in common? They’re all idiots who unjustly lauded Neil Gaiman’s sprawling, turgid American Gods.
In aforesaid novel, Gaiman (whom I was pleased to recently discover, has not fallen victim to nominative determinism) posits a situation where the broadly contemporary United States of America are littered with destitute gods, brought over by immigrants years previously, but now gone to seed through lack of reverence and observance.
Could it be, another zombie-related article on the BBC News website, so soon after this and this? The august public broadcaster seems finally to be giving proportionate attention to the threat of the undead, and indeed the possibility of them forming an entente cordiale with invertebrates. Had they been reading my bewilderingly prescient Ant! Zombies! series? I doubt it.
He no doubt thought I would be amused by the story, or at least heartened at finding a kindred spirit. He could not have been more wrong. I have nothing but disdain for the unnamed petitioner of the article. If anything, the “Concerned Citizen” has muddied the waters which I have spent many years attempting to decontaminate.
Today – the 9th June – is a noteworthy date for several reasons.
On this day in 1870, English author Charles Dickens died at his home in Kent. The great man finally succumbed to disease, or old age, or whatever. I wonder if his obituary was released over time via a protracted serialisation relying on unlikely coincidences within the narrative?
Earlier in history, on 9th June 1623, the mighty British forces in America had displayed their bravery and strategic brilliance, proposing a toast to perpetual friendship with the tribes of the Potomac River under Chief Opechancanough, most of whom later dropped dead from the poisoned wine. (This is presumably the same kind of cunning the Brits used to subjugate my home town of Carrickfergus in 1177, under their fabled knight, John de Courcy.)
And today, 9th June 2011, the Bilderberg Group will meet in Switzerland, in some incredibly luxurious hotel where the tog count of the duvets is through the roof.