ZM: Author Interview with Isaac Marion

Warm_Bodies_Theatrical_PosterI have a treat for you guys today! In honor of our Zombie Mondays, My Seryniti has none other than Isaac Marion! If you have not heard, he has written a fabulous little book called Warm Bodies (see my review), where a zombie actually falls in love. But not in a weird way! Well, maybe it is weird, but it is also epic!! I think the zombie genre needed something different and Isaac Marion was the person to give it to us! And aren’t we all super psyched!

I don’t know about you guys but I’ve already seen Warm Bodies the movie (another review!), plan on buying the prequel, and then buying the movie when it comes out. I already told the hubbster that it’s on my Halloween List!

And without more of my fan girlishness… Here’s Isaac!


Thank you so much for doing the zombie interview with My Seryniti!

The Book Stuff:

Nova – How did Warm Bodies start for you? Image, Idea, Dream?

Idea: what would happen if I imagined I was a traditional George Romero-style zombie wandering through the apocalypse and then just started writing? What would come out?

Nova – Did you have any growing pains with this novel?

I was writing it during a very painful transition in my personal life, from depressed, apathetic cynic struggling to find an identity outside of my conservative religious upbringing into someone who understands why he’s here and what he’s hoping for. A lot of that found its way into the book.

Nova – Do you have a message you try to convey when writing a story?

There’s usually something–not necessarily a “message” but a theme or a concept–that I want to communicate. I rarely write something just for the hell of it.

Nova – What are you reading right now?

Angelmaker, by Nick Harkaway. It’s brilliant, as they say in England.

Nova – Are there any authors (living or dead) that you would name as influences?

Kurt Vonnegut, Dave Eggers, Douglas Coupland, Charlie Kaufman, Stephen King

Nova – What do you do when you’re not writing?

These days? Mostly I reply to emails and answer questions like these. My personal life has pretty much dissolved.

Nova – Have you always wanted to be an author?

I always wanted to be…something creative. I used to jump around between writing, painting, and music. I think it was around age 20 that I decided writing was going to be my #1 ambition. But I wrote my first novel at age 14. (It was horrible.)

Nova – How did you break into the industry?

I waited outside the gate until the security guard took a smoke break, then scaled the walls with suction cups.

Nova – What is your writing style? Do you create outlines for your writing or do you just sit and type away?

I usually figure out what’s going to happen in the story in very broad strokes before I actually dive into the prose itself. I’ll write stuff like “R wanders around the airport, gets hungry, he and M go into the city to find food” just so I have a general idea of where the story’s going. It’s very hard to invent the story and write the prose at the same time. But sometimes  once I start writing it ends up bucking the script and going somewhere unexpected. I always leave the freedom for that to happen.

Nova – What is your next project? What have you been working on recently? The New Hunger

I just finished a novella that’s a prequel to WARM BODIES, called THE NEW HUNGER, which is available now as an ebook from My current project is the actual, proper sequel–and epic conclusion!–to WARM BODIES.

Nova – Does your book reflect your view on zombies?

What does it mean to have “a view on zombies”? You do know they aren’t real, right?

Nova – How did you come up with this fabulous and very different idea of a zombie being able to turn back human?

It’s just where the story wanted to go. R knew from the beginning he wanted to be something more than a walking corpse, and wanting it is half of the cure.

Nova – From your book:  What’s your favorite quote?

Oh God, I don’t know if I can turn my own writing into an inspirational quote…would be a bit pompous, don’t you think?

The Serious Stuff:

Nova – Do you think a zombiepocalypse is possible?

I would venture that it’s already happened.

Nova – If there were an outbreak, what would be your first reaction?

I don’t know, probably “Wait, what? Zombies are real now??” Something like that.

Nova – You can only choose a weapon currently in your house. What would you choose?

Well, I have a 4-foot broadsword in my basement, so probably that. Swords don’t run out of ammo! (Also, ultra-badass.)

Nova – Would you venture away from your home or fortify and hunker down?

Wouldn’t last long if I walled myself up in here. All I have in my fridge is a couple beers and a frozen burrito.

Fav Stuff:

Nova – Fast or slow zombies?

Don’t care.

Nova – Favorite weapon of choice?


Nova – Favorite food?

On a day to day basis, probably tacos.

Nova – Would you kill for it the zombie apocalypse?


Nova – Favorite zombie book and movie? Why?

I’ve never read any zombie books. The only one that sparks my interest is ZONE ONE by Colson Whitehead, mainly because it’s a zombie book by a McArthur Genius Award winner…

Nova – Do you write using a computer or the old fashioned pen to paper?

I can’t fathom writing a novel with pen and paper. The editing process would be an incomprehensible nightmare. Mad props to the old masters for pulling this off.

Nova – Do you listen to music while writing? If so, what’s on your playlist!?

It depends on what I’m writing. For Warm Bodies, it was mostly Boards of Canada and the soundtracks to the movies Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and Me and You and Everyone We Know. Also some Aphex Twin and Godpseed You Black Emperor for the scary parts.

Nova – Do you have a guilty pleasure?

Yes. Writing about zombies.

Nova – What is your favorite word?


Nova – What is your least favorite word?

Any fake swear word.

Nova – Do you talk to your characters?

Most of my characters have people role-playing them on Twitter, so I talk to them on Twitter. Which is really weird.

Nova – What sound do you love?

The distant drone of airplanes on a hot summer day.

Nova – What sound do you hate?

People trying to force their speaking voice into unnaturally low registers in order to sound more powerful and dominant. You sound like you have throat cancer. Stop it.

Nova – What’s your favorite time of year?

All the transitions between seasons. Especially Winter-into-Spring.

Nova – Best vacation spot ever… (or place to get away from all the zombies!)

I’ve never been anywhere tropical or otherwise objectively pleasant. The most exotic land I’ve visited is Iceland–which would make a great refuge from zombies, actually, since it’s an isolated island.

About Isaac Marion:

ISAAC MARION was born near Seattle in 1981 and has lived in and around that city ever since. He began writing in high school and self-published three novels before finally breaking through with Warm Bodies. He currently splits his time between writing more novels, playing obscure instruments in obscure bands, and exploring the country in his 1977 GMC motor home.



  1. […] Zombie Mondays: Isaac Marion (Author Interview) […]

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