At long last I have the time to write a new Zombie story! Following on from the successful series, The Common Cold, I am writing about the Zombie Apocalypse as it begins in London.
Playing God has been a long time coming – I blame having to pay the mortgage and eating. As a result of many requests I have written a book that covers off some of the questions raised by my readers. The book has been made available on my website and Amazon from today, January 1st, 2016, in line with the events as they play out.
I don’t usually do 4 books in a trilogy for pretty obvious reasons, but here is an excerpt from the first chapter of the latest in The Common Cold: A Zombie Chronicle.
The Common Cold: Playing God
Chapter 1: Day Zero – Sydney, Australia
From his apartment on New South Head Road in Vaucluse, Sydney Harbour looked as beautiful as ever, if a little smog-hazed.
“It’s gunna be a scorcher,” Alex mumbled to himself while pouring yet another cup of strong coffee. He knew he shouldn’t drink it, his heartburn would begin to chastise him well before eleven o’clock at this rate, but he really needed the caffeine buzz just to give him the strength to leave home and go to work.
Friends-with-Benefits, he’d heard it called. It was a strange term for friends who had gotten intimate, and he really hoped their friendship remained intact – he would find out when he and Mattie met up for lunch later that day.
Dancing coyly around the edge of a physical relationship for about five years now, their mutual sexual attraction had finally boiled over on New Year’s Eve. Alex blamed Mattie’s skin-tight, short red skirt as a temptation too far. Just thinking back on that exquisite image he felt a hot flush surging through him.
Standing and daydreaming as he looked out the front window he watched as some lucky bastard in a yacht way out in the middle of the peaceful blue harbour glided gently across his view towards the Heads – why did the water have to be so inviting on a work day, he wondered? He gulped down the last of the coffee, grabbed his bicycle and hurried outside.
The streets were always quiet at this time of the day; who the hell would want to be up and at ’em before six in the morning anyway, unless they absolutely had to? Somehow the atmosphere this morning seemed oddly still – apart from the insistent sounds of numerous sirens off in the distance. The emergency services were starting what sounded like a busy day judging by the distant wailing of sirens all around him.
Sniffing the air he caught the familiar summer scent of something burning; only it didn’t smell like a normal bushfire. Some silly sod’s set a paper fire, he thought, hoping it wouldn’t get out of control and start a real blaze. Perhaps that’s what the sirens were about. He dismissed the thought from his mind as he began his semi-energetic cycle ride to Bondi Junction, from where he would let the train take the strain to the office.
Alex worked at Sydney International Airport in the suburb of Mascot and would occasionally cycle all the way there. Today he decided to catch the train; in spite of his personal fitness, the last week’s celebrations and late nights had taken their toll on his energy levels. The coffee was helping a little but the smoke in the air was making him feel a little queasy – or was it the partying? He didn’t know or care at that moment; he assumed that the fatigue he felt and his blocked sinuses was probably just the start of a summer cold.
Putting on his headphones he began to listen to John and Garry on 2UE. He always enjoyed their discussions, usually getting to the heart of the matter in short order – those guys never minced their words. This morning was different – only John was present, apparently Garry had not made it in, something to do with emergency services closing down roads in his area. Maybe that was the sound of sirens Alex could hear off in the distance; it was amazing how sound travelled across the Harbour. What was more disturbing though was John harping on about a meteorite that had been lassoed by a NASA spacecraft and brought back to earth. Apparently they had put some sort of covering around it that would protect it as it re-entered the atmosphere, preventing it from burning up in the process. John was criticizing NASA, reporting that in spite of their brilliance they had only succeeded in failing: the meteorite had broken up upon re-entry sending pieces hurtling through the atmosphere and dropping debris everywhere it went, all around the world.
Listening to John raging on about bloody scientists doing daft tricks they couldn’t control and the terrible consequences for mankind in general, Alex felt a sudden urge to call Mattie to make sure that she was alright. Balancing carefully and keeping an eye out for any police in the vicinity he continued to cycle while holding his mobile to his ear; for some reason he felt a frisson of fear when there was no answer. Perhaps Mattie had gone into work earlier than usual, but somehow he knew this was unlikely as in his experience she wasn’t known to be an early riser. She’d always loved her bed and sleep.
With his stress levels elevated, Alex put more effort into his cycling and was soon at Bondi Junction. Locking the bike up on the stands as usual, he hurried inside the station to his customary spot on the concourse. As he waited for his train to be announced, he noticed the illuminated boards were displaying numerous delays and cancellations across all platforms.
“Jeez, the trains are screwed up already?” he mumbled under his breath, his irritation rising, annoyed that his early start would almost certainly be for nothing.
Looking around he noticed that there were fewer commuters than he expected even following the New Year celebrations and those that were around were shambling about as if unsure of their intentions. Suddenly a man dressed in a business suit raced down the platform back towards the gates where Alex stood, a look of sheer terror etched on his face.
Alex’s heart began to race in anticipation of the worst.
“Get the fuck outta here, mate!” the man blurted as he raced past. “Save yourself! They’re coming!”
The unfit stranger was struggling hard to draw in enough oxygen, making it sound almost as if he was sobbing but in his adrenalin-fuelled panic he managed to keep on running away from the confusing scene.
Perplexed, Alex looked down the platform and noticed a raggedy crowd of about thirty people making its way in his direction.
Some of them appeared to be injured, globs of red matter, possibly blood, soiling their clothing and smeared on their faces. What the hell had been going on? It didn’t make sense. Had there been some terrible accident or…
Alex’s speculations were halted as he realised that although many of the approaching people had different kinds of injuries to their limbs and faces they all seemed to have one thing in common – their rapt attention appeared to be focused exclusively on him.
Due to work constraints it has taken a little longer than usual to produce another book. Very soon a spin-off from The Common Cold: A Zombie Chronicle will be published. You might like to come up to speed on The Common Cold – purchase a copy here and find out what it’s all about!
Initially I will put a chapter or two online for your pleasure. It will then be available to purchase on my website as a self-published and downloadable eBook in either ePub or MOBI formats (suits all kinds of readers including Kindle, Sony, Kobo, B&N, Aldiko, Windows devices and other handheld devices).
I have taken to heart a few ‘complaints’ and frustrations of my readers following the cliff-hanger ending of the third in The Common Cold trilogy.
This spin-off gives a flavour of what lay behind some aspects of the Common COld Trilogy (#TCC).
I have now owned three greyhounds, all ex-racers, as pets. What wonderful creatures they are; they walk well, they interact with children and adults beautifully, all they need is a bit of TLC and they are happy. So what the hell is going on? Australian greyhounds are being abused horribly by low-life, scum-sucking bastards in South America and Asia. And you, the Australian Government, are the only thing that can possibly intervene to protect them. Please do so, my current dog is Australian and his relatives are being murdered in the most appalling ways. Here is a picture of him pleading with you.
I’m Australian and proud of it. It isn’t about being Australian, blaming one country or another. It is clear that the greyhound racing scene has been invaded by heartless creatures – greyhound trainers and owners of a certain type. They lack any emotion when it comes to our furry earthly inhabitants. In their lust for money they have captured small furry wild animals, tied them to the race track and made greyhounds chase them until they are caught in a bloody frenzy in order to increase the poor dog’s appetite for chasing the bait. That’s one reason why I’d like to break certain people’s kneecaps with a bat.
The second reason is that they are illegally exporting greyhounds from Australia to other countries and feeding them on everything from cocaine to Viagra and arsenic to make them aggressive enough to race to the death, killing any other dog that gets in the way. Advocates of greyhounds trying to stop this barbaric practice are being threatened and cajoled by these criminals to keep quite but a recent report has finally emerged that the practice is still flourishing.
I have a black greyhound. He is a beautiful example of a dog that has raced and then retired and looked after by softies like me. Greyhounds are probably one of the most placid and obliging dogs you can get; as racers they learn to put up with a lot of abuse and ‘strict training’ and perhaps this is reflected in their docile nature when retired. In the UK some ten thousand retire every year, while the numbers for re-homing are depressing small relative to this figure. While we have unearthed the disgusting execution practices of a certain farmer in Yorkshire over ex-racers, it seems they’re the lucky ones – apparently three quarters of all greyhound pups born are destroyed because they don’t make the racing grade.
This ‘sport’ is full of death but to hear what is happening because the Australian Government seems powerless to intervene and make arrests, it just makes me sick. Forget bringing back the death penalty, an eye-for-an-eye practice might work better. Feed these wonderful trainers the same drugs and poisons and make them fight each other to the death. Let’s face it, anyone who is willing to bet on such disgraceful dog races will almost certainly be willing to bet on the outcome of human drug-raddled fights. Now there’s a thing I won’t object to – I’ll be on the side lines, cheering as the bastards that perpetrate this sort of scum-suckery get what’s owed them!
There, I’ve said it now. My message to the Australian Government – please please please stop this practice, now. I couldn’t bring myself to post images of this terrible crime – I’m sure you can all imagine; at least you can enjoy those of my lovely boys!
A lot of criticism has been directed at Halloween over the years, from the recent church suggestions that children ought to dress up as saints depicting their stories, to the annual resurgence of ‘possession’ particularly amongst children. My gut feeling is that extreme trauma would ensue if children dressed up as saints considering the appalling ends most came to. I know for a fact that Halloween Witches exist.
That’s not really the point of my blog tonight. I thought I would share a photo I took this evening. A police helicopter flew over at about 1630 our time and I decided to take some photos. I must have taken a couple of dozen and they turned out pretty standard, such as this one.
It wasn’t until I was looking a little more closely when I came across this one! I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t taken it myself. Up to now I didn’t really believe in witches except as an ancient religious concept, mostly long gone.
Happy Halloween – if you dare!
At last! The third in the Trilogy, “The Common Cold: A Zombie Chronicle – Dez Rez” is now available on Amazon Kindle. In the next few days it will become available on other platforms through www.smashwords.com.
No longer able to eke out a hand to mouth existence in the mountains above Denver, and with the arrival of new survivors putting a strain on limited resources, Rob, Daniel and the rest of the original survivors decide that the time has come for pastures new.
Identifying Soda Bay in California as an area that might well offer hopes of a new beginning, it is up to key members of the group to establish a bridgehead and make it safe for those that want to make the journey from the mountains.
Problem is, this prime real estate is already occupied by people with their own absolute and terrifying agenda. Can they share the territory, or will it be winner takes all? Whatever the outcome, the dangers have just gotten worse and harder to identify. A new evil is abroad and their hard-won survival is about to be challenged – yet again.
I hope you enjoy it; once again I have tried hard to make it as unique as possible, hopefully that will be apparent to you, the reader.
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Books by the Author:
The Common Cold: A Zombie Chronicle
The Common Cold: A Zombie Chronicle – Cabin Fever (Sequel)
The Common Cold: A Zombie Chronicle – Dez Rez (Sequel)
Return Of A King: A Zombie Chronicle
Return Of A King: A Zombie Chronicle – Z Factor
The Animus Portal
Put your walking boots and bloody make-up on! It’s the Maidenhead Zombie Walk
The annual Zombie Walk in which hordes of zombies descend upon Maidenhead to celebrate Halloween will take place on Saturday 25th October 2014. Starting at 5pm at Maidenhead Train station the zombies will stumble and waddle up past the boy in the boat statue and down the high street, turning right to end outside of the Town Hall. There will be an after party with an event page of its own. Keep an eye out on this Facebook page.
See you there!
I’ve just uploaded the next two chapters read by my good self. Check it out on
Fleeing their zombified owners, our feathered and fuzzy friends contend with hunger (they did miss lunch), short tempers and the cat. Babe struggles with his sexuality (not struggle exactly) when he meets Simone Pig (get it?).
Today I have just published a spoken video of the first two chapters of the story of Babe: Pig In The Apocalypse. Babe and his friendshave a rude awakening when they discover Mr Farmer has bitten the hand that feeds him. It puts into perspective the petty squabbles between the farm’s animals – almost. If it wasn’t for the cat the Zombie Apocalypse might just be a fun little adventure for the young pig.
Listen to Babe on Youtube:
Check out chapters 1 and 2 on
Chapters 3 and 4 are now also available on:
First YouTube Video
I am pleased to announce the video for the first chapter of The Common Cold: A Zombie Chronicle on YouTube. Hope you like the story and the graphic work. It took ages to find the right bodies!
Check it out on: http://youtu.be/LClN8hY6HOQ