Christine Verstraete is a big Halloween fan who enjoys a good scare or two. Her short fiction has appeared online and in anthologies including Timeshares and Steampunk'd from DAW Books. Her new YA book, GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie released August 1. Stop by her website at http://cverstraete.com or blogs, http://girlzombieauthors.blogspot.com and http://candidcanine.blogspot.com.
Before you link over to her website or blogs, stick around here a little longer. I'm grilling Christine with questions about her books and writing.
Q: Zombies, romance, and humor -- how do you fit all these in one story?
Christine: Carefully… ha!
Well Becca, the 16-year-old protagonist is only a part-Z (Zombie), so a teenager still has to have some kind of life, (or un-life?) right? Other than fighting off full Zs, she has this good-looking guy she's getting to know… And when you're in the worst of times, a little humor can't hurt, though she's not too fond of her would-be boyfriend's penchant for bad zombie jokes…
Q: You've also written a children's mystery, which has a sweet and definitely not scary storyline. Did you write it before you started writing zombies?
A: My kid's mystery was out originally in 2009 (how times flies!) and as a longtime horror fan, I've gradually been letting my stories get a little darker, but they still usually have some weird quirk or a touch of humor. I can't help myself.
Q: The cover for My Life as a Teenage Zombie is scary looking. The dark eyes, which actually are looking in different directions, totally say "zombie"! (I love it.) Did you do the cover or have input on it?
A: I did make suggestions on the cover, but the eye wasn't my idea and I have to admit I wasn't sure about it at first… but it grew on me. Since one of Becca's "quirks" after turning part Z is a sometimes "twirly" eye, it makes sense. And it's memorable, right?
Q: You do both long and short fiction. Which is easier, book length or short story and why?
A: I don't know if I can call either one "easier." I like writing short stories, but I noticed I tended to be starting them slower, as if I were writing a longer story. You have more leisure to explore things in a book or longer story that shorter formats often don't allow, but I do love both.
Q: Tell us one thing about yourself that you've never talked about before, be it scary, funny, or happy.
A: I used to be afraid of the dark. Really. Must've been all those monster movies I watched or scary books I read. Had to be. I mean, that thing in the closet isn't real, right?
Q: Now, in one paragraph tell us what GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie is about.
Sixteen-year-old Rebecca Herrera Hayes' life changes forever when her cousin comes home with a deadly secret—he's becoming a zombie, a fate he shares with her through an accidental scratch. Becca becomes a part-Z (zombie), with all the weird quirks and habits no girl wants to be noticed for. But time is running out… she needs to find something, anything, to stop this deadly transformation before it is forever too late...
* Be sure to comment to win assorted prizes. Leave an email or website to contact you. Readers can see pix of the prizes on day 1 of the tour at GirlZombieAuthors.
Blog: GirlZombieAuthors, http://girlzombieauthors.blogspot.com
*** Don't forget to follow along the rest of the tour! ***
GIRL Z: My Life as a Teenage Zombie Book Launch Blog Tour - August 5-17
Monday, 8/5 - Marian Allen asks Why Zombies?
Tuesday, 8/6 - Armand Rosamilia, http://armandrosamilia.com/
Wednesday, 8/7 - GirlZombieAuthors, http://girlzombieauthors.blogspot.com
Thursday, 8/8 - StraightFromHel, Helen Ginger, http://straightfromhel.blogspot.com/
Friday, 8/9 - Dana Wright, ZombieGirlShambling, http://zombiegirlshambling.blogspot.com/
Saturday, 8/10 - GirlZombieAuthors, http://girlzombieauthors.blogspot.com
Monday, 8/12 - AR Von, Dreamz of Dragons, http://dreamzofdragons.blogspot.com/
Tuesday, 8/13 - B. Swangin Webster, Books, Shoes, Writing, http://booksshoeswriting.blogspot.com/
Wednesday, 8/14 - DB Corey, http://dbcorey.blogspot.com/
Thursday, 8/15 - Wrap-up - GirlZombieAuthors, http://girlzombieauthors.blogspot.com
Friday, 8/16 – Austin Camacho, Another Writer’s Life, http://ascamacho.blogspot.com
Saturday, 8/17 – Winners announced after 12 noon Central – GirlZombieAuthors, http://girlzombieauthors.blogspot.com