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Tuesday, 4 February 2014

All You Have Ever Wanted To Know About Ian McClellan

“I’m tired and cold. It was a hellish 37 degrees here in Port Charlotte, Florida when I left for work this morning and only got up to 66. I grew up in Ireland and NY, but I’ve been down here for 13 years and I’ve gotten used to being warm in that time. When I’m not writing books about zombies or articles for Zombie Guide Magazine I’m stuck in the real world driving a delivery truck. It’s season here now, and I’m working 60-plus hours a week. That’s okay, though, because I come home everyday to three smiling faces and wagging tails and all is well.”
1. What was the inspiration behind your novel?
My first novel, Zombie/Apocalypse 2012: A Political Horror Story, was actually supposed to be a short story with a long name. I used to have a little faith in the government and the media, but I’ve become more and more cynical about the whole process in recent years. One day I was watching some congressmen debate whether or not we’d be able to help some people whose town had been destroyed by a tornado. They wanted to know what we would be cutting to pay for the recovery effort. I was appalled. I got to wondering how they would handle the dead coming back to life in droves and sat down to write how I thought that scenario would play out. Needless to say, it was pretty negative and snarky. There was this other aspect of the story, though, that wanted to come out. Before I knew it, I was writing a book.
2. Did you plan out the story or let it develop as you wrote?
I had planned out very little, but I wasn’t expecting it to be more than 5,000 words or so. Most of it just came to me as I was writing. I did have the end planned out. I’ve gotten a lot of flack about that ending. It’s abrupt and harsh and some people loved it, but a few of them have really hated it. One reviewer on Amazon even said I “went too far, way too far.” I thought that was epic. My only two star review and it’s my favorite.
My second book, which I’m shopping around for a publisher now, started out as just a title. I was reading this article on one of those crazy conspiracy websites about the moon landing being faked and a news story came on TV about Sally Ride passing away. Then, something about zombies popped up in my Facebook news feed. The title just appeared in my head at that moment. One Small Step: How the U.S. Faked the Moon Landing to Avert the Zombie Apocalypse. I’ve since shortened that to One Undead Step. I didn’t have a character or a plot. I didn’t know how we were going to get from point A to Point B. I just started writing, and I think it turned out pretty well.
3. Which zombie book would you recommend to others and why?
Man, there are a ton. If you’re a zombie book reader and I really had to narrow it down to one I’d say Jordan’s Brains: A Zombie Evolution by the brilliant author J. Cornell Michel. It really is the most unique zombie book I’ve read in a lot of ways. There are a lot of zombie novels out there that have their own flair, but that one is truly different.
4. How long do you think you’d survive the zombie apocalypse?
Despite my heavy smoking being in direct conflict with rule #1 of Zombieland, I think I’ll do alright. I live in Florida. There are a lot of really old people here. You know what they say about not having to swim faster than the sharks. Also, I have some guns and I’m a decent shot.
5. If there was going to be a film based on your survival within the zombie apocalypse, who would you like to play you?
Good Lord, that’s a tough one. Maybe Ricky Gervais. He’s quite a bit older than me, but that would be a decent fit. Not terribly attractive, snarky, good delivery. I wonder if he could do my accent, which is kind of weird from all the big moves I made when I was younger.
Find out more about Ian and his books at

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