Today we welcome Will Peden.
Book ‘Em: Tell us about you and your life outside of writing.
Will Peden: I am a US Marine Corps Operation Iraqi and Operation Enduring Freedom veteran as well as a current member of the Missouri National Guard. Outside of writing I am also a husband and father of two lovely daughters as well as a volunteer fire fighter in my area. I am also the owner/designer of Will Designs with over eight years of experience.
Book ‘Em: Which books have you written? What are they about and why did you choose to write them? Do your books have a message? Are they fiction or nonfiction?
Will Peden: I have a couple of articles as well as being the designer of the NWA Ringside Magazine from 2014-2015. I am also the sole writer and cover designer for Book 1 in the Tripton-Z Series: Soldiers of ZED which is a post-apocalyptic zombie novel based in the Ozarks of Missouri. It is a fiction novel based in real time with no clear message. I have also just released my first Grayscale coloring book with all the images taken by CVA Photo. It is also available on my website and amazon – Hot Rod Heaven.
Book ‘Em: Do you have a work in progress?
Will Peden: Yes, I am currently writing Book 2 in the Tripton-Z Series as well as a stand alone serial killer novel based around professional wrestling.
Book ‘Em: What was the most difficult section/piece you ever wrote? What made it difficult?
Will Peden: The ending of my very first novel has got to be the most difficult piece. Reason being is that I was unsure of the reaction of my potential fans and was unsure if a second novel would be wanted. Other than that, the only other piece that was difficult was when I had to write the scene that killed my grandmother in Book 1.
Book ‘Em: What sort of research do you do for your work?
Will Peden: For the Soldiers of ZED novel, I simply live in the area and travel the areas that the book takes place for authenticity. As for the serial killer, I have studied numerous serial killers, murders and professional wrestlers to help again with the authenticity.
Book ‘Em: Which books and authors do you read for pleasure? Is there an author that inspires you?
Will Peden: Honestly, I prefer true crime and autobiographies personally. As for inspiration, it would be a toss up between Stephen King and James Patterson.
Book ‘Em: Was there a person who encouraged you to write?
Will Peden: Yes, My wife has been behind me the entire time, including motivating me to continue writing when I wanted to give up.
Book ‘Em: What would you say are your strengths as an author?
Will Peden: My experiences and creativity are my strengths. Being a graphic designer helps keep my creative thinking alive and well.
Book ‘Em: How often do you write, and do you write using a strict routine?
Will Peden: To be honest, I write when I feel like it. I am hoping to eventually get to where writing is my career, but at this time financially it isn’t there but I write when I feel the story talking to me.
Book ‘Em: Five years from now, where do you see yourself as a writer?
Will Peden: I would like to have at least the Tripton-Z Series complete as well as have a solid following from my conventions and online. I hope in five years to be writing professionally as my full time job.
Book ‘Em: If you could offer one piece of advice to a novice writer, what would it be?
Will Peden: Never give up. If it takes you one month or fifteen years never give up on your dream of becoming a writer.
Book ‘Em: What would you consider the best compliment a reader could give your book?
Will Peden: That is simple: Reading it and letting me know what they felt about it. Be it from a review or just a simple message about looking forward to the next novel.
Book ‘Em: Provide an excerpt of your writing that you would like to share with our members.
Cartridge cases continuously hitting the ground putting a brass layer around each of us. “Throw me some more ammo.” I roar. As I let out a few more rounds into this seemingly endless horde.
“Here’s a few!” Jack shouts as he tosses me six, full, thirty-round clips from the backseat of the truck. I finish emptying the rest of my initial clip,
“I’m out, reloading,” I yell to make sure the guys heard me. I speed reload, grab the empty mag and 2 of the full ones and hand them to DJ.
“Here, you hold these, I can’t carry all this. My bag is in the rig over there. But I don’t think we will get an opening big enough to make a run for it and my bag.” I tell DJ. With pockets full of shotgun rounds, a Glock in my pants and a shotgun slung over my back, I somehow manage to find room for two more of the magazines. Remembering Tracy had her hair in a ponytail gave me an idea. I set my rifle next to DJ who is still visibly shaken up and yet to fire his gun. I walk back to Tracy’s body, pick up what’s left of her head and pull the ponytail holders out of her hair.
“What are you doing?” demands Wayne who has stopped laying rounds down field to see what I was up to.
“John threw me a couple of mags and I don’t have any tape, Tracy is dead, so I figured I would grab her hair ties as she won’t need them anymore,” I answer in a snarky voice.
“What do you need ponytail holders for? You don’t have a whole lot of hair boy.” Wayne angrily remarks.
“Look, I ain’t trying to cause a fight; we got a big enough one over there. I’m just going to be using these ties to put the mags together for faster reloading. It is an old military tactic to limit the down time” I explain. Wayne glares at me, as I put the ties around my wrist and walk back to DJ.
“Get ready to take off. You will know when the time is right. Just run down the hill and head east on the interstate towards the base, even if I don’t follow.” I instruct.
“Keep your head on a swivel, there is no telling what or who is out there.” I remind DJ.
“I thought they are helping us, why would they try and shoot me?” Asks a very nervous and visibly shaking DJ. Wayne looks over and becomes suspicious as he can visually tell something is up with DJ.
“Hey, what’s up with him?” Wayne asks as he walks over to us.
“Give him a break; this is his first time ever in any type of combat including firing a weapon. Not everyone is cut out for this, you should know this.” I explain to Wayne who looks angry. Wayne rolls his eyes then continues to fire at the endless horde.
Agitated, I look over to DJ and motion for him to go as I mouth “It’s time, go now, I will be behind you.” DJ hesitates, and then nods in acceptance. He pats himself down to make sure he has everything secure, looks at the opening then looks around at the Silent Soldiers who are occupied by this seemingly endless horde of the undead. Without a second thought, DJ takes off running through the opening I pointed out to him earlier and heads the way he was instructed to. Wayne’s head jerks around quickly and sees DJ running and starts to yell.
“We got…” Wayne stops mid-sentence as I pull out the pistol and point it directly at his head as I back toward the opening. Just then all the noise of the gunfire stops as everyone turns and looks towards me. The only noise that could be heard was the grumbling and moaning as a horde slowly approaches our fortified location. I make it to the opening and simply wave as I turn around and take off in a full sprint the same direction as DJ recently did. As I am running Wayne takes off and stops just outside the opening. Everyone is dumbfounded and confused as Wayne looks visibly pissed and fires a couple of rounds in my direction missing with every shot. Constantine yells for him to stop just as a zombie who became attracted to the gunshots surprises Wayne and takes a huge bite out of his neck. I turn my head to look back as I see Wayne fall to the ground and start to get devoured. I continued running down to the interstate. As I get to a car that has been parked with the doors open and keys in the ignition: I check it completely in, around and under to ensure that I don’t suffer the same fate that Wayne did. I take a seat in the driver’s seat putting my legs inside the car and shutting the door to catch my breath.
After a few moments of catching my breath I quickly look around, open the door and step out listening for gunshots to ensure they are still up there. Knowing the other guys are just up the hill I quickly head east down the interstate keeping my head on a swivel looking for DJ who took off ahead of me. I shout out for DJ, looking around the other cars for any sign of movement or sign that DJ was there.
‘I hope he remembered which direction to continue.’ I thought to myself.
Book Trailer – Under Development