Welcome to the Highlander Studios blog.

I won't promise any earth shattering revelations here. What I will be trying to do is post some new products as I release them, share some thoughts on gaming and show some pics of games and other stuff that I enjoy. So come in and make yourselves at home.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

So you think you can dance like a zombie?

     Let me start by saying that my fiancee thinks I spend entirely too much time thinking about the coming zombie apocalypse. Granted, I question the defensibility of most buildings when I see them and I wonder how stable a mechanical lift would be as a firing platform. Or how many zombies it would take to knock it over. But most of my research has value for surviving most forms of apocalypse or natural disaster. You know, the important stuff like herding pigs for methane collection or collecting waste from restaurant grease traps to make bio diesel to run the generator. And of course you need to make lye from wood ash to help purify the bio diesel and make soap from the glycerin by product. All useful stuff, no?

     OK, so I hope it never happens, but in the meantime, I've started taking that walk down the literary path. I want to write stories. Short stories for now, but eventually novels as well. The last year has been filled with the absorption of information on writing. Some of the books have been really fun to read, some have sucked and some were dry, but filled with a lot of good information. The latest on the nightstand is Plot and Structure by James Scott Bell. I'm not far into it but the last chapter was about finding ideas. And, man, has it set off a storm inside my tea cup brain.

     Tonight's barnstorm came from America's Got Talent. Yeah, yeah, I know... but it's something Susan and I do together while she winds down from work. And TIVO is amazing. We watch the cool stuff and speed through the garbage. Anyway... the act was the West Springfield Dance Team or some name close to that. They do dark, gothic, zombie-esque dance interpretation. Not a bad performance but I started thinking. What if...
     It has long been thought that moving like a zombie while among them could actually prevent or greatly reduce the chance of a zombie attack. This is especially effective when the slow, shambling movements are combined with the scent of death and decay. Shortly after the current necrofilovirus outbreak became less of an immediate threat, local clubs began to have zombie nights. Patrons would dress as zombies and go bar shambling. Some of the more enterprising establishments held contests for the best costume, most convincing moan and other themes relating to zombies. These became quite popular as a way to blow off some steam and poke fun at a very serious fact of daily life.

     The current trend for thrill seekers started when some of the less discriminating businesses started hiring wranglers to capture the living dead to provide atmosphere in their clubs. Zombies in cages or behind glass became the norm in the seedier edges of town. When one chained zombie got loose and wandered toward the dance floor, a seminal change occurred in the whole club experience. A quick acting bouncer put the zombie down before anyone was bitten and the club was closed by the authorities until an investigation was completed. Rather than scare custom away, the incident seemed to fuel their desire for risk taking. The club was filled to capacity every night after for a month.

     It was just a matter of time before an unscrupulous owner opened the first zombie dance corral. Customers paid a premium to dance in an enclosed space with zombies. At first they were de-clawed and wore mouth restraints for the patron's safety and there were very few incidents. But some wealthy customers convinced a manager to stay open after hours for a private dance. This became a true test of the whole move like a zombie theory. Some were less than successful. However, their deaths have furthered zombie survival research. For example, we now know that zombie parts are much more reliable than last month's roast beef science experiment for masking scent. And bathing less than a week before a dance is a dead giveaway.

     All of this has led to the drafting of new local, state and national legislation regulating and restricting the presence of zombies in public places. But until the laws are passed, zombie wrangling is on the rise and has become an extremely lucrative profession for those with the knack. Television viewers also eagerly await the first season of  a new reality TV competition, "So you think you can dance like a zombie?"

     So it's just an idea with a bit of flesh on the bones. But I think it can be added to a story somewhere down the road. Can't wait to see what new ideas pop up tomorrow.


John Bear Ross said...

I highly recommend Stephen King's non-fiction book, "On Writing."

It helped clean up my adverb-riddled prose, makeing it stronger and more direct. It will probably help you out as well.

Good luck!


John Bear Ross said...


Ugh. Spelling. Some writer, huh? ;)


Rodrick Campbell said...

Maybe we should just keep sculpting. ;p

I've read "On Writing." It's one of the best books on the subject so far.