DEAD INSIDE is coming along nicely. I am currently on Chapter 4, wherein Robin (our protagonist/heroine) learns that her new partner Nick is a bit of a fuck-up. This is not something you want to deal with when your job is being a salvager eight years after a zombie apocalypse.
This book, the third in the series after RISE and AGE OF THE DEAD, takes place in the Lower Mainland. It has only one character returning so far from the first two books. Really it is more of a ‘same universe’ story than a direct sequel to them. I got the idea while driving through the area between Abbotsford and Mission, and it all naturally fell into place.
And so I have written a solid intro to Robin and Nick, in Chapter 1. Robin is a former UBC astrophysics student who was caught up in the ZA, and survived for almost a year on the Endowment Lands of the peninsula before being chased out by hungry dead things. Nick is a young man just making his way in the world. His first job outside the Wall of the Mission Safe Zone has been a bit of an eye opener for him, having come face to face with a ‘higher than usual number of the undead’ on his first time out. Fortunately Robin is there to guide him.
Other characters are Shakey Waterson, proprietor of Shakey’s Guns and Ammo, an old hippie who’s taken up a new career. His friend Jim Reilly is the Mission Sheriff, who in Chapter 2 comes to Shakey with some problems.
In Chapter 3 we meet Amanda Martin… What is she doing here, seven years after the events of AGE OF THE DEAD? You’ll see…
There are others, of course, but these are the important ones. There are minor characters, an actual antagonist, and a plotline that I hope will shock and surprise readers of the previous books.
BLACK HORIZON is also coming along. It is my epic SF tale about some astronauts who spent 350+ years in suspended animation on the Moon after a global war on Earth destroyed civilisation.. It starts when they return to a much changed Earth. Characters include Tara Riseman, a NAUSA (North American Union Space Agency) astronaut who wakes up from suspension as her EEV is on re-entry. She’s sensible, smart, and decisive. What can I say, I like a strong female lead character.
Father-Captain James Montrose is a Jesuit Soldier-Priest of the Black Legion, the military arm of an emergent civilisation on Earth, and an explorer who searches out Ancient machines and tools for use by the new culture.
Knight-Commander Gavin Hamilton is strictly a soldier, a ranking officer of the Legion who spends his time putting down troublesome barbarian tribes. He comes across as very British to me, which was a surprise when I started writing him.
There is also Reiko, an AI who remains behind on the Moon, and an interesting fellow named Park Ludwig Choi, who is from the Asteroid Belt society, the Commonwealth.
The characters come from all sorts of backgrounds and tech levels, and the interaction of the characters should be fascinating. I have test chapters out for BLACK HORIZON, and the readers seem to like it so far. I have written far more of this than I have of DEAD INSIDE.
Further developments as they occur. Stay tuned to this channel for the duration of the emergency.