When I sat down to write my zombie novel Diaries of the Damned, it was fresh off the bat from completing my second horror novel Highway to Hell Part Two: Trials and Tribulations. With that series I found myself standing on the edge of so many potential directions to take the story, each one equally epic in scope that I wanted to write something simple. Maybe simple is the wrong word, for zombies are far from that. I guess I wanted to write something fun, something entertaining.
I had never given much thought to writing zombie fiction, but it seemed to fit all of my requirements, and the story formed in my mind almost instantly. It helped I had two long work meetings on back to back days, where I could sit in the back and make some good notes about my story.
I found that writing Diaries of the Damned came really easy to me. It was actually the easiest novel to write. I was penning about 10,000 words a week and self-editing them too. The best part was that writing it was great fun too.
I have been very fortunate that the book was well received. It has since been re-launched as a self-published title and so I must build it up from scratch once more. I am not afraid however. The easy road was never one I wanted to travel anyway.
For a while I found myself asking, could I write another zombie novel? I think that there could be a second Diaries novel in me, and sure enough there are plenty of zombie ideas bouncing around inside my creative noggin, but I decided to move away, to keep on trucking through the genre, just because I could. Not to mention the fact that I owe a certain Mr. Brown a third instalment of Highway to Hell, but shhhh, let’s just keep that between us.
I had put all thoughts of zombie writing to one side until an interesting opportunity came my way. A collective zombie project. I got my brain in gear and started plotting and jotting a few things, and suddenly my mind is rife with zombie storylines and interesting direction to take a plot line.
The can be no doubt about it, I certain feel relaxed when penning zombie fiction, and the whole creative process is very enjoyable. Hell, even the edits were good fun to go through. My initial trepidation was because I like to keep my writing varied, more for me than anything. But who can argue with the muse when she strikes.
Of course, I have plenty of other books to write, including aforementioned Highway to Hell III, but at least you can grab one or two of my other novels between now and then.
Who is Alex Laybourne?
Born and raised in the coastal English town Lowestoft, it should come as no surprise (to those that have the misfortune of knowing this place) that I became a horror writer.
From an early age I was sent to schools which were at least 30 minutes' drive away and so spent most of my free time alone, as the friends I did have lived too far away for me to be able to hang out with them in the weekends or holidays.
I have been a writer as long as I can remember and have always had a vivid imagination. To this very day I find it all too easy to just drift away into my own mind and explore the world I create; where the conditions always seem to be just perfect for the cultivation of ideas, plots, scenes, characters and lines of dialogue
I am married and have four wonderful children; James, Logan, Ashleigh and Damon. My biggest dream for them is that they grow up, and spend their lives doing what makes them happy, whatever that is.
For people who buy my work, I hope that they enjoy what they read and that I can create something that takes them away from reality for a short time. For me, the greatest compliment I can receive is not based on rankings but by knowing that people enjoy what I produce, that they buy my work with pleasure and never once feel as though their money would have been better spent elsewhere.
Where can you find me?
I am active an many different social media platforms, including:
If you fancy grabbing some of my work, you can find my entire portfolio here:
If horror is your thing, then maybe travel the Highway to Hell, alone or with a group, your chance of survival is slim.
If zombies are more to your liking, my crop of British undead in my novel Diaries of the Damned will surely satisfy you craving for terror.