In early October of 2012, I published a page-a-week webcomic called Poisoned Eden. The art for the comic was done by Jason Fletcher, a very talented artist, and I did the comic page layouts, site design, and writing. In late December of 2013, we published the last page of the first “issue” of the comic, and then shelved it due to other claims on our time.
In many respects, Poisoned Eden is a bridge between my first book, The Ultimate Guide to Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse, and my second book, The Blessed Man and the Witch. If you’re familiar with all three pieces of work, you’ll definitely see the progression. In the first book, I set out a framework for storytelling by codifying what you need to do to survive a fantastic scenario (a zombie apocalypse). In the webcomic, I attempted to tell a more visual story using elements of the zombie theme, the end of the world, and Biblical horror. And in the novel, I moved past the zombie theme, going straight for an apocalyptic story with Biblical elements.
Another similarity between Poisoned Eden and The Blessed Man and the Witch is the style of storytelling. In both, the story is character-driven, and the bizarre and frequently terrifying things that happen affect each character differently. We see the destruction of the world occur in bits and pieces through the eyes of disparate people, though in the comic, the apocalypse is somewhat familiar to most of us: zombies mindlessly destroying society.
In Poisoned Eden, the main characters are all family. There’s Elise, the Good Mother, who just wants to get home to her baby. There’s Michael, her husband, stranded half a country away. He decides to make an empire for himself before everything turns to rubble. There’s Alina, the Slacker Girl: Elise and Michael’s first child, who runs from danger until she finds she can’t run away when everywhere’s dangerous. And finally there’s Karl, the Warrior. He’s Elise’s father, an Amish blacksmith.
I also wrote several original articles for Poisoned Eden, some about zombie survival (the Zombies and the City feature series I’m particularly proud of), some are interviews with survival or combat experts, and the rest are fictional blog posts from someone with the handle of Uncle Phranck.
Uncle Phranck’s story takes some very unusual twists and turns. It starts out as a young man trying to literally blog a zombie apocalypse, becoming a kind of Matt Drudge for the end of the world. Once his internet connection fails, he’s forced to go out on his own, and things get really strange from there. Even if the webcomic doesn’t appeal, you may find Uncle Phranck’s blog series interesting.
Despite that Poisoned Eden didn’t take on the (un)life I had originally hoped for, there’s a lot about it I’m proud of, and it’s worth your time to take a look at it. Some day, I hope to expand my Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse book by adding material from Poisoned Eden.
But not today. Now that we’re finally moved into the new house, I can get back to writing the sequel to The Blessed Man and the Witch.
TL;DR: Poisoned Eden is a webcomic I wrote about the zombie apocalypse, with lots of interesting stuff. And it’s free. Go read it.