Monday, August 22, 2016

Guest Blog + Giveaway: Zombie Uprising by William Burke

UFI welcomes Author William Burke. Thanks for Joining us!!

Voodoo Child’s Voodoo Spirits
In writing VOODOO CHILD, BOOK ONE: ZOMBIE UPRISING I did quite a bit or research into the practice of Voodoo. This ancient religion has gotten a bad rap in literature and movies, and I’m probably not helping a bit. Suffice to say it is a faith practiced by millions of kind, decent people who have no desire to curse you by sticking pins in dolls or turn you into a zombie. What really fascinated me about Voodoo was its rich pantheon of spirits. Voodoo belief is based on one god (Bondye) who interacts with mankind through an array of spirits (Loa).  Each Loa represents specific facets of nature or life.  For VOODOO CHILD I’ve used two spirits—Baron Kriminel and Pomba Gira.  Like most ignorant authors I’ve played fast and loose with those characters but I still tried to stay close to their roots.

Bear in mind that there are three types of Voodoo—African, Haitian and Louisianan—each with different practices and spirits.  That’s why the information can get a bit hazy.

BARON KRIMINEL– This guy is complicated, so bear with me.  The largest family of Voodoo Loa is the Ghede, led by the barons—La Croix, Samedi, Cimitière, Kriminel and Maman Brigitte.  The barons are each facets of their leader, Baron Samedi, and hence share his appearance. Classically, he has a skeletal body wrapped in a cape and top hat with an ever-present cigar.  All of the barons are wild, raucous and often obscene. I don’t practice Voodoo, but in the same breath didn’t feel it was appropriate to use the beloved Baron Samedi as a bad guy, insulting a few million practicing Voudon in the process.  BUT Baron Kriminel is a universally evil spirit, and therefore fair game.  In Voodoo lore he’s envisioned as a murderer who was condemned to death. This is a spirit so wicked that evoking him requires setting live black chickens on fire just so he can hear them scream!   Please note that very few Voodoo practitioners evoke this maniac.  He is one of the few Loa who can admit people into the afterlife and he holds no grudges against the dead … but is not so enamored of the living.  There have been many cinematic depictions of the baron's family tree but the most famous is from the James Bond film Live and Let Die, primarily due to Geoffrey Holder’s amazing performance.

NOTE – Baron Kriminel is super-bad but there’s another Voodoo loa that's so evil she makes him look like a boy scout. Her name is Marinette - Lady of the Screech Owl. She is the mistress of the dreaded Bizango cult and holds authority over werewolves. She’ll be prominently featured in an upcoming VOODOO CHILD book.:::Marinette Bois Sèch.jpg

POMBA GIRA – Gira’s persona is more varied and complex than all the barons combined.  Like the barons there are several Pomba Giras, each a facet of another. She’s either a spirit of love and fertility or (in the Brazilian variation) the mistress of the devil.  It all depends on which belief is your thing.  Traditionally, she is more recognized by practitioners of Umbanda, a variation on Voodoo.  Universally she personifies sexuality, fertility and strength.  Her appearance varies from being an insanely voluptuous, red-skinned, horned devil woman to an equally voluptuous mortal woman wearing next to nothing. Gira is irresistible and promiscuous so it made perfect sense for Baron Kriminel to become obsessed with her. Appropriately, in cards the Queen of Hearts represents Gira.

In my book these two loa make a wager, with the fate of all mankind as the prize. So check out Voodoo Child, Book One: Zombie Uprising and see how their deadly game plays out.

After two years of ghostwriting, William Burke has released his first novel VOODOO CHILD, Book One: Zombie Uprising. It's the first installment of a new horror series chronicling the exploits of Maggie Child and her Voodoo priestess partner Sarafina as they battle to save the island of Fantomas from the wrath of evil Voodoo spirits.

The author was raised on a diet of late night creature features, comic books, Mad magazines and horror stories. As a result every volume will be packed with eccentric characters, dark humor, chills, zombies, ghosts, monsters, military hardware and plenty of stuff blowing up.

Prior to writing Voodoo Child he was the creator and director of the Destination America television series Hauntings and Horrors. He has also written scripts for two Cinemax television series, Forbidden Science and Lingerie, which he also produced. He has also written magazine pieces for Fangoria and the Phantom of the Movies Videoscope among others.

William began his film and television career as a perfectly respectable video engineer at the venerable United Nations. Budget cuts shifted him to becoming a production manager and assistant director on an array of New York based indie films. With that experience under his belt he relocated to Los Angeles where he eventually produced sixteen feature films and two television series for the Playboy Entertainment Group. After years of producing T&A extravaganzas, kickboxing epics and gangster rap videos, he created a self financed television pilot entitled American Mystery Tour. Canada's CTV picked up the series under the title Creepy Canada, which was then re-titled Hauntings and Horrors in the USA.  Since then he has successfully produced three series for HBO/Cinemax as well as documentaries and other … stuff.

After hundreds of hours of film and television production he is basking in the freedom of the written word, where small budgets and giant egos are only memories. He lives in Toronto.

If you enjoyed the first adventure please visit where you'll find lots of interesting information about Voodoo and military hardware, along with excerpts from Sarafina's personal diary AND, as a gift to readers, the author will be serializing a prequel novella.

Find William and his books
Author interview video:

Voodoo Child
Zombie Uprising #1
The forces of darkness are out to destroy mankind… Too bad they never reckoned on facing Maggie Child!

Army chopper pilot Maggie Child has a reputation for being fearless, professional and, above all, rational. But when she's shot down over Iraq her well-ordered life spirals into a paranormal nightmare. Alone, wounded and surrounded by hostile forces, Maggie is rescued from certain death by a demon straight out of Dante's Inferno. Then, barely alive, she's abducted by a private military corporation conducting insidious medical experiments. Her escape from their covert hellhole lands her on a Caribbean island where an evil voodoo spirit and a psychotic female dictator are conspiring to unleash an apocalyptic zombie plague. Then she uncovers the most terrifying secret of all—her own destiny. It seems a Voodoo oracle has ordained her the only warrior capable of saving humanity from a supernatural Armageddon … whether she wants the job or not!

But saving the world isn't a one-woman job, so she teams up with a trio of unlikely heroes—a conspiracy obsessed marijuana smuggler, a Voodoo priestess with an appetite for reality television, and a burnt out ex-mercenary. Together, they'll take on an army of the walking dead, with the fate of humanity resting in their eccentric hands.

Voodoo Child, Book One: Zombie Uprising is the first novel in a new horror series packed with supernatural thrills, rousing adventure, dark humor, Voodoo lore and plenty of zombie stomping action. But a word of warning; don't shoot these zombies in the head … because that just makes them mad!

It's the legions of hell versus Maggie Child … and hell doesn't have a prayer!
Book Trailer:

Excerpt-Orphanage Scene:

It was an hour before Rip reached the orphanage's unpaved entry road. He stopped the Rover. "Everybody ready?"
Crimson shoved a full magazine into her AK47. "I only have two more magazines after this."
Maggie checked her ammo. "Same here, so let's make every shot count."
Glen tapped on the roof. "I'm ready as I'll ever be."
Sarafina looked at her friends. "So… Hooah then?"
"Now you're learning," Maggie said, cocking the AK-47.
Rip threw the Rover into gear. "Let's do this!"
Rip drove down the bumpy dirt trail until they saw the orphanage dead ahead. Dozens of zombies were clustered in front, pounding at the doors and windows. He stopped forty yards from the building and pulled a pair of binoculars from the glove box.
"I see barricades on the windows. But it's just piled up furniture so it won't hold for long."
Maggie grabbed the binoculars and took a look. "The problem is we can't fire into that horde without stray bullets going inside."
Glen leaned into the driver's window. "And I'm betting the building ain't up to fire codes, so if we use my flamethrower…"
"We'll risk burning the whole place down. Rip, how many kids are in there?"
"By my recollection about thirty."
Maggie continued scanning the layout. "The school bus is parked about fifty yards to our left, that's the only way we’re moving all those kids. But we still have to draw that swarm away from the building, or at least thin the herd."
"Let me out," Sarafina said, climbing over the front seat. "I will sing the Voodoo purification ritual. It is what I used to draw the first zombie away from you."
Maggie pulled her back onto the seat. "Good idea but save your voice, I've got a better plan."
Maggie hopped out of the Rover, shouldering her rifle. "Give me the boom box—" Rip handed it to her "—I'm going to try to draw the bulk of them away, and then grab the bus. You guys round up the kids."
Glen jumped down off the roof. "Wait a second! I'm trained infantry, and you're just a pilot, so this is my kind of show."
"Except if one of them one bites you you're screwed, and so are all those kids." She held up her bitten arm. "But I can take a few bites and still keep moving."
Glen knew she was right but didn't want to admit it. Maggie leaned in and kissed him. "Don't worry, Glen, I'm not going to die on you again."
Maggie turned, running directly at the building, and then cut sharply to her left. I need a decent field of fire, she thought, one that won't hit the building. She found a good angle and stopped halfway between the building and the school bus. I hope to hell Rip put fresh batteries in this, she thought. Maggie hit play and the opening strains of Inna Godda Davida, rumbled through the air. "Hey assholes, come and get some!" Maggie shouted, holding the boom box over her head; she felt like John Cusack in that movie.
The zombies shifted their attention to Maggie and within seconds at least half were scrambling her way. The less decayed zombies moved at a fast trot while the older cadavers shambled behind, forming a second wave.

Tour Wide

a Rafflecopter giveaway