Etienne DeForest was born in Lansing, MI but grew up in Dallas, TX. While in Texas he was apprenticing to be a gunsmith, until he decided that an office job better suited his tastes and salary requirements. So at the age of 21 he moved up to Michigan to attend college, and get his dream Corporate American job.
One day something changed, and Etienne decided he didn't want this life anymore. He cut his 50 to 60 hour work weeks down to 40 hour work weeks. And when his bosses yelled at him for his new work ethic, he returned their frustrations with a blank stare until they grew tired of hearing themselves talk. Eventually he was fired, he was poor, and he was happy again.
Etienne currently lives in a trailer park in Jackson, MI. He writes and publishes books; and lives a fairly simple life.
He sent me his book, The Zombie Survival Guide, How to live like a King after the Outbreak, for review and my I say, It's pretty funny and very informative. Theres information on almost ever aspect you'd ever encounter in a Zombie apocalypse such as Training Zombies, Zombie Fortification, and even how to deal with zombie Pimps! Who knew!?! The book as a good read, very enjoyable, and for these reasons, Etienne DeForest is in the Dollar Bin Horror Spotlight.
Q. Where did you get the idea for the book?
A. The day before I got the idea for the book I had gotten fired from my very good job as a corporate accountant. I woke up at four A.M. sweating and panting from a very graphic nightmare about zombies ripping down my door and eating me alive. I was petrified, and I didn't have a gun to make myself feel better. It was then I realized that I had no idea what I would do if a zombie outbreak occurred. So I decided to write a handbook about how to survive a zombie outbreak. I jumped on Amazon to see if the idea had already been done, and of course it had, by Max Brooks of all people. Mel Brooks' son. So I got intimidated, and I wasn't going to write the book. Then I got drunk the next day and said to hell with Max Brooks. I wrote the about the author section and everybody I showed it to laughed their ass's off. One person even started crying he was laughing so hard. After that I had the confidence to write the rest of the book.
Q. I loved the chapter about Zombie Training. How did you figure out how to do it?
A. The idea of zombie training relies of the premise that any animal can be classically conditioned enough to respond to simulation in a way you define, if the training is done in a scientific manner. Much like Pavlov's Dogs. The problem with this, was I decided to use violence as the stimulation that represses the zombie's killer instinct, and I'm not a very violent man. So before writing I did the only thing that makes me violent. I got shit faced drunk, and wrote all night till I passed out next to my computer. The next day I woke up with a pounding headache and read what I had written. Besides all the spelling and grammar mistakes, it actually wasn't that bad. I cleaned it up and viola, the chapter was done.
Q. Seeing as you know your Zombies, what are your favorite Zombie films?
A. I'm a big fan of the “Evil Dead” series. Especially “Army of Darkness”. The first fifteen minutes of that movie are so awesome the rest of the movie has a hard time keeping up the pace. Plus Ash is such a macho badass it's hilarious. After that I have to go with “Dead Alive”. Again because it's comical. There is a zombie on zombie sex scene in the movie that is beyond funny. When you add to that the fact I've never seen zombie on zombie sex in any other movie, it takes the crown for creativity.
Q. What other projects are you currently working on and where can we find out more?
A. I'm currently working on a Choose Your Own Ending style book tentatively named “Texas Biker Zombies From Outer Space”. The premise is that a comet enters the earth's atmosphere somewhere over Texas, and brings zombism along with it. YOU, (remember this is a book about your decisions) are a sociopath biker with a serious cocaine addiction, that is now stuck in a zombie outbreak.
You then go around snorting cocaine off of the asses of zombie strippers, seducing not so attractive female survivors with date rape drugs, opening up zombie whore houses, and killing any human survivors who stand in your way.
Or, you go around snorting cocaine off of babies you just saved, helping survivors along the way, and starting up a new community with the people you find, that is a utopia of peace, and transcends the evils of humanity with love for your fellow man.
Either way you're still a coke head, I'm not giving you a choice when it comes to that.
Find out more at www.nxebooks.com. I'm thinking it should be done by Spring 2010 (and grab a copy of the Zombie Survival Guide while your there).