By Courtney Cole
You don’t have to have a PhD in molecular biology to write a zombie novel, but that’s the path Saul Tanpepper took.
Following a company merger that saw his former job in biotechnology and pharmaceutical development move out of state, Tanpepper opted to go in a different direction. Like many members of his family, he decided instead to act on his love of writing, a choice that eventually led to the creation of his own zombie mythos.
Tanpepper, a huge fan of The Walking Dead, approached the project with a scientific background and understanding human anatomy and physiology. He first started with a short story called “Shorting the Undead & Other Horrors.” The book had a short story called “Golgotha” that turned into a much longer series known as “Gameland.”
Gameland is a story where a very intelligent scientist goes missing, while coming up with a cure to a government project with the goal to turn dead people into soldiers.
The series also follows a younger gamer and others who decided to break into Long Island, which was locked down due to the a zombie outbreak happening. The goal of the young gamer was to get to a live action video arcade which was known as Gameland.
Tanpepper said “Velveteen” is his favorite zombie story, due to the fact that the story is about a young girl that does not age over 3 years of her dealing with gameland. Velveteen also includes a rabbit, a nod to the works of his uncle who is an author of children’s books.
Despite writing in the genre, Tanpepper does not personally think he would be able to survive a zombie apocalypse for very long. He is a bit of a survivalist and an apocalypse prepper, but not as much as he knows he should be in the event of an actual apocalypse. Being also past his prime, a post apocalyptic world would be too brutal, he said. He does still have disaster supplies and plans in places for if the world as we know it does end and being a former US Army Combat medic, EMT, and trauma specialist would give him some useful skills.
Recently Tanpepper has finished two series known as “Bunker 12” and “The Flense.” While he is still writing and publishing, he tends to focus more on the business side of his publishing company, which is known as Brinestone Press. But he does have a plan for 2021 to release the original Gameland series with new content and book covers.
Categories: zombie books