Everywhere you look there's Zombies. A large percentage of new releases of self published books are, from what I've seen, about the Zombie apocalypse. The walking dead want to eat your brains and they're everywhere from prime time TV to the shelves of your local bookstore. I want to interject right here that I've done no real research to back up my statement above. So please don't fill my comments with links and figure to prove otherwise.
Zombies have become synonymous with horror fiction. or would it be the other way around?
During a recent conversation in a local book store, talk turned to writing. I alluded to the fact that I was a writer and one person asked what I wrote about. I replied, horror. Eyes rolled, heads nodded as knowing glances were exchanged. So you write about Zombies? One of the group asked.
No, I write about things that go bump in the night. Ghosts, haunted places, evil spirits, that sort of thing. The blank looks were enough to send me on my way. Curses, foiled by Zombies again.
Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against Zombies. In fact I have two short stories that deal with Zombies in my soon to be released collection. Well not directly with Zombies, the two stories deal more with the characters who find themselves in the middle of a Zombie apocalypse, and how they adapt, or not, to the changing situation.
But I have come to my own conclusions as to why the genre is so popular. I believe it's a response to the growing confusion that has become our daily lives, the maddening pace and the over crowding. We're connected 24/7 and are being overwhelmed by information.
Zombie fiction as well as Dystopian Fiction such as The Hunger Games, offers us an escape from the insanity that has become our lives in the twenty first century. Not to mention the lifting of the normal restraints society places upon us. Zombies are a target rich environment whose presence has thinned the herd that is humanity, giving those of us who survive more elbow room to live. It offers a wild adventure of survival of the fittest, assuming of course that you are one of the lucky ones who doesn't end up as a hapless, undead, stumbling creature that craves the taste of brains.