Thursday, November 20, 2008

David Wellington

David Wellington is fast becoming one of my favorite authors. Wellington hit the scene big with his novel MONSTER ISLAND during the height of the zombie fiction craze a few years ago. There have certainly been better zombie novels (WORLD WAR Z being my favorite) but Wellington hit at just the right time with a surprisingly well-written, well designed book that made it a must-read for zombie fans. Wellington's different take on zombies (He plays with the tropes a little.) brought freshness (heh) to a genre that was burning out fast. But that's not what makes Wellington stand out. The cool thing about him is that he writes his novels in chapters and posts them on the internet before they ever see print. Then, once he's done, he collects the chapters and tweaks them to read better in novel form and releases them.

Wellington followed up MONSTER ISLAND with a sequel and a prequel (MONSTER WORLD AND MONSTER NATION) and has since moved on to a new subject...vampires. I'm currently reading the third of his vampire novels, VAMPIRE ZERO. In the first of his vampire novels, 13 BULLETS and it's first sequel 99 COFFINS, he introduced us to a completely different kind of vampire. No romantic Europeans in dinner jackets and cloaks here. Wellington's vampires are savage, animalistic and incredibly powerful. And completely obsessed with blood. They're hairless, colorless and all teeth and claws. They're scary.

What impresses me most about Wellington is that never takes the easy way out. He throws his characters into crazy, impossible situations and then finds a logical way out. And in the vampire novels, his central protagonist is a lesbian but this fact is never presented in an exploitive way or used to titillate. It's merely a part of her character. And only occasionally is her orientation reacted to by other characters.

Very rarely, Wellington's prose doesn't ring quite true and sometimes the books feel like the serialized chapters they started out as but he is improving with each and every novel and his books are all compulsive page-turners. I'm really looking forward to what he does next. May I suggest werewolves?

With this drawing, I wanted to see what would happen if I just roughed it in in blue and then attacked it with the brush pen. I also wanted to try out my new whiteout pen. Things got a little sloppy around the legs since that's what I was going for, I guess that's okay.


Brian said...

Great energy to the piece and the legs don't look sloppy from where I'm surfing the web.

Warren said...

Legs don't look sloppy to me neither. I'd hate to meet that guy in an alley. I might look up those vampire novels. Sound like a good scare. :)

David said...

That's a great image--incredible energy. I'm so glad you liked the books!

David Wellington

David said...

Oh--and as for werewolves:

Matt Wieringo said...

Thanks, David. And thanks for posting. I checked the link and was very happy to find werewolves prowling about. I read all your books in print form so I'm going to wait patiently for the release. But I think it's extremely generous of you to let your fans read your books online for free.

Heywood Jablomie said...

Wow great pic matt & a response by the author himself!!

I've been looking for some new books to read so I'll check these out next time I go to the book store.

Thomas said...

Happy Spooky Thanksgiving!!!