I've managed to lure the delightful Amanda Jennings to write a guest post for me. She's an actual, real, published writer whose first novel "Sworn Secret" is out on 16 August 2012, which I'm incredibly excited about on her behalf!
Amanda's currently working hard on her next book. At least she is when I'm not distracting her with talks of the apocalypse! You can keep up with all of her shenanigans by visiting her official website and following her on twitter. I can say with complete authority that she loves a good natter!
And now, over to Amanda: no pressure, but this had better be good!...
When the zombie apocalypse is upon us, when the virus has
attacked 90% of the human population, when hordes of dead-but-walking bodies
romp the planet in search of living flesh in a gluttonous frenzy akin to
students with the munchies craving Monster Munch from the late-night garage,
the lucky few – of which I intend to be one – will need their wits about them.
They will also need a carefully packed handbag.
My pre-Zombie Apocalypse handbag – a cheap, mock-leather
shoulder bag – at the time of writing, holds the following: some used tissues,
a manky apple core, some loose coppers with bits of chocolate and biscuit
crumbs stuck to them, crumpled Tesco receipts, a lip gloss, a hairy hairbrush,
a book of stamps with no stamps in it, and two pens, one that works, one that
doesn’t. None of these things is going to be remotely useful when the undead
are attempting to chow down on my softer bits. So as soon as the first zombies
appear I shall jettison this and replace it with my Zombie Apocalypse Handbag
How to Put Together the PerfectZombie Apocalypse Handbag of Joy
The bag itself:
Practically speaking, this should ideally be a medium-sized, robust rucksack
with multi-pockets and adjustable straps. However, I suggest now is the time to
grab a Hermes Birkin, the must-have bag beloved of celebrities of the likes of
Kim Kardashian and her pals. You won’t have to pay the $10,000 price tag, of
course – and this is one of the Zombie Apocalypse plus points – you can loot
one! I do think this is worth doing as one should never underestimate the
importance of looking stylish whilst running for your life.
Sugar: You will
need some sweets. When being chased by salivating zombies it’s difficult to
predict how long you’ll need to keep running. There are bound to be times when
you need a rapid injection of sucrose to give you that extra energy boost. But
what to choose? Now this is important. You mustn’t
go with your favourites – in my case these would be Werther’s Originals or
Swizzels Love Hearts – if you do, you’ll eat them all in one go. You need to
pack something not-so-tasty. Top of the list is a tin of Fisherman’s Friends
though a decent second choice would be a dozen party-size packets of ParmaViolets.
Weaponry: In an
ideal post-Apocalyptic world you would have a handgun. However, it’s tricky to
walk into a shop and buy one. If you can, great, if you can’t, you will need a
good alternative. In this case, a sharp implement that’s sturdy enough to
penetrate a half-rotten skull is essential, but not something so lethal that if
you fall whilst fleeing you run the risk of impaling yourself. Go for something
handy-sized, pointy and made of metal, like a sharpened marquee tent peg or a
WWII Japanese Samurai Katana with sheath.
your current partner becomes a rancid, bloodless zombie, you will need to
consider protection of the sexual kind. Who knows what urges may overcome you
in the Apocalypse. A handsome living man, in fact ANY living man, is going to
look irresistible next to those leering, putrid corpses. Stress, excitement, an
overdose of Parma Violets, all these things are likely to weaken your resolve.
WARNING - this is NOT the time to fall pregnant!! Morning sickness, sore feet,
backache, indigestion, and an extra two stone are the last things you need when
trying to escape a dead dude’s mouth. Not only that, but nobody knows how long
the undead will remain walking and hungry. Childbirth leaves you vulnerable,
prone to tears, and desperate for doughnuts. You do not need this. Condoms are essential.
been suggested that fireworks in the night sky can distract a herd of zombies
and hold their attention just long enough for the averagely fit human to make
their escape. It’s impractical to carry fireworks, not to mention unwise, but a pack of sparklers might just save your life. I’m of the belief that no zombie
could fail to be mesmerised by a sparkler. You will obviously need a lighter as
well. A wind-resistant Zippo is ideal.
A vial and syringe:
When you reach Nirvana or the Ark – or whatever the VIPs have decided to call
the zombie-free haven in the Highlands surrounded by barbed wire and heavily
armed snipers – they are going to want you to fill out forms, sign papers, and
provide proof you’re definitely alive before they call off the dogs and open
the gates. Syringe some blood, fill the vial, and post it though the letterbox
as soon as you arrive. Hopefully, they’ll have the results of your blood test
back before the ungodly swarm of dead locals in tattered kilts surround and
Methylated spirits: At
some stage during the Zombie Apocalypse, when life itself seems futile, you
will need a little drink. But rather like the sweets, there’s no point in
packing a beer or a Tesco Finest Pouilly Fumé because you’ll drink it before the Apocalypse has even been
declared official. Meths will make you go blind or kill you, but without doubt
death by Meths is preferable to death by ravenous zombie.
So there you have it, my Zombie Apocalypse Handbag of Joy.
Obviously, you can customise your own handbag by adding a few items of your own
choosing – fiendish Sudoku or a small colouring book perhaps – but as long as
you have the above ‘capsule items’, you’ll give yourself a fighting chance.