“I was one of those weird little girls who at Halloween wanted to be a monster, not a princess.”
Let’s celebrate spooky season with The Art of the Zombie Movie (Applause Books)! Author Lisa Morton & I talk about her new book and the fun of researching the history of zombies in pop culture and folklore, the challenge & joy of assembling the 500 illustrations in the book (including one-sheets, stills, alternative art, and more), and how she got messed up at an early age by Dawn Of The Dead. We get into her history of horror (it was all over once she saw The Exorcist), how she found herself as a writer and wound up with 6 Bram Stoker Awards®, her take on fast vs. slow zombies, and what she found researching the George Romero papers at UPitt. We also discuss her experience as a bookseller in Los Angeles (go, Iliad Bookshop!), LA’s writer-culture, getting her heart broken by screenwriting, her work to bring the classic Fantasmagoriana anthology to a new reading public, and a lot more. Give it a listen! And go read The Art of the Zombie Movie!
“I think the important thing about the post-Romero conception of the zombie is the horde. It’s not just a single thing shambling along looking to eat people, it’s the faceless horde that shambles together.”
“It’s a weird experience, being a 22-year-old and realizing, ‘Oh, my god, Ray Bradbury is in the back of my car right now!'”
“LA is a much more interesting place than people give it credit for. It’s WAY darker.”
About our Guest
Lisa Morton is a screenwriter, author of non-fiction books, and prose writer whose work was described by the American Library Association’s Readers’ Advisory Guide to Horror as “consistently dark, unsettling, and frightening.” She is a six-time winner of the Bram Stoker Award®, the author of four novels and over 150 short stories, and a world-class Halloween and paranormal expert. Her latest releases include Calling the Spirits: A History of Seances and The Art of the Zombie Movie. Recent short stories appeared in Best American Mystery Stories 2020, Final Cuts: New Tales of Hollywood Horror and Other Spectacles, and Classic Monsters Unleashed. Lisa lives in Los Angeles.
Credits: This episode’s music is Fella by Hal Mayforth, used with permission from the artist. The conversation was recorded in my hotel during Readercon on a pair of Blue enCORE 200 microphones feeding into a Zoom PodTrak P4 digital recorder & interface. I recorded the intro and outro on a Heil PR-40 Dynamic Studio Recording Microphone feeding into a Zoom PodTrak P4. All processing and editing done in Adobe Audition CC. Photo of solo Lisa by Seth Ryan; combo one by me. It’s on my instagram.