Monday, September 3, 2012

Len Barnhart, The First!

Everyone who reads my regular blog knows how much I admire Len Barnhart. The main reason I like him is that he pretty much had the guts to start the current wave of zombie fiction that fans of apocalyptic horror are now enjoying. Before he came along with his book REIGN OF THE DEAD there really wasn't anyone writing this kind of thing. Phil Nuttman may have preceded him a bit with his WET WORK novel, but Len is the guy who really put it on the line and got his book out there where everyone could see it.

And it's clear that the fans liked what they read, because REIGN opened up the floodgates. And now there are, quite literally, hundreds of decent zombie novels on the market. Even Max Brooks agrees with me on this one. Before Len Barnhart set the standard, nobody else was writing this kind of stuff!

James Robert Smith: What made you want to brave the waters and write what is arguably one of the very first modern zombie novels?

Len Barnhart: I actually just wanted to just see if I could complete the job. You know…writing a book. Most do not. "Reign" was my first attempt and my biggest fear was that I would be bogged down with a lot of research. I figured the best way around that was to write about something I knew. There were several genres I considered, but the competition was stiff. When I looked into how many zombie novels were out there I found nothing. The prospect of being one of the first to do it appealed to me.

      Now of course there are many books about zombies. I've had other writers email me and tell me I was their inspiration for writing their own book on the subject. That pleases me. It's quite satisfying to know you've done something that has influenced others in a positive way.

Len's website at REIGN OF THE DEAD!

Buy your copy of REIGN OF THE DEAD (Reloaded) from Severed Press.

The Zombie novel that started the wave!

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