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Friday, December 5, 2014

Nick Cole introduces Apocalypse Weird and the Red King

Today's interview is the first in a new series of interviews I'm doing to introduce the Apocalypse Weird authors. Apocalypse Weird is a one of a kind project started by a guild of independent authors who got together and decided to make their own brand world. And I'm talking bestselling indie authors: to put it in Michael Bunker's own words, "Matthew Mather of Cyberstorm and The Atopia Series, Nick Cole of The Wasteland Saga and Soda Pop Soldier, E.E Giorgi of Chimeras, Steven Savile of the Ogmios Team novels and Battlefield Three, Weston Oches of Seal Team 666, Jennifer Ellis of A Pair of Docks, and even me. . . Michael Bunker, of Pennsylvania and Wick, (and a bunch of other top flight authors) are teaming up to create an earth spanning, time bending, apocalyptic smorgasbord of epic proportions." (Read Michael's full post here.)

Yes, my name's up there too, I'm so proud to be part of this. :-)

Author Hank Garner is also doing a series of podcasts on Apocalypse Weird: you can listen to Nick Cole talk about the project here.

How can readers get involved? Start by reading the first book, The Red King, by Nick Cole, which is completely free and sets the world of Apocalypse Weird. You can also sign up for our mailing list to make sure you don't miss the big launch on february 23rd. And you can join us on Facebook, too.

The Red King launched on Black Friday and it's already got 50 reviews with a 4.5 average rating! Nick is a superb writer and he's in in fact my first guest of the Apocalypse Weird authors, so he can tell you in his own words what this is all about.

Welcome, Nick!

EEG: How did you get the idea for the Apocalypse Project?

NC: The Apocalypse Weird idea is two things at once. First off it's a Brand World (Star Wars, Star Trek, Conan) developed for Wonderment Media. Basically we want to tell a bunch of stories inside the same world and get some big arcs and great drama going forward. We want to do some literary events like nothing the publishing industry has ever seen. Meaning: we've got a five year plan for how the world develops from initial Apocalypse to Endgame and there will be some pretty gripping arcs that bring a lot of writers, their characters and the sandbox they've developed, together. Secondly the Apocalypse Weird is an idea that a series of Post Apocalyptic events might happen all at once. I think the world we're developing will end up very much like Stephen King's EndWorld of The Dark Tower series. So what we're seeing with Apocalypse Weird is the inception of just such a fractured place and the heroes that will becomes its legends and the villains its bogey men, conversely.

EEG: Can you tell us about the "easter eggs" that will be "hidden" in the various books?

NC: We want to give the readers more than they get with the average book. Because we're doing this digitally that allows us to drop in secret websites and clues that readers can access to get extra content. We feel this adds value to our product and we want to show readers that they mean a lot to us. So, some of the Easter a Eggs I can talk about are things like comic panels that show referred events, or things the characters might have talked about but weren't actually in the novel. In The Red King we have a few chapters dealing with a Special Operator and his harrowing adventure in a zombie-overrun downtown LA. One of his previous missions is a failed rescue attempt. We decided to hide a website inside the Digital Version of Red King and we hired a comic book artist to show what happens on that mission in comic panels on that secret website. We've got things like that and also hidden clues that lead to interactive websites which reveal more of what's going on in the Apocalypse Weird world.

EEG: What are the long-term plans for this project?

NC: The long term plans start of Feb 23rd with a five book launch starting multiple story arcs within the Apocalypse Weird. Then we'll be dropping two books a month. We're asking our writers to settle down and take their time telling the big epic they've always wanted to tell. But we've put it out there that they can tell that twisted little tale that ends badly. The twilight zone jaw dropper. We have three phases for our world and right now we're in The Sandbox phase. The Endgame is the final phase and there's a secret one in between. We're also opening the door for what we call our TIER THREE writers. This is basically fanfic we're partnering with ThirdScribe to publish. There will be a voting system and the top stories will be offered a contract to publish a TIER ONE Apocalypse Weird canon novel. We're really excited about this as we are already getting writers who want in on this project.

EEG: How can readers get involved?

NC: I think the neat thing about Apocalypse Weird is that there are multiple levels to interact with. You can enjoy it (a completely ground floor-underground thing that's going to drop a game changer nuclear weapon on the publishing world) as much as you want to. You can pick a favorite arc and enjoy just that. Other story arcs might inform and develop the picture but you don't have to read everything to follow along. We're looking at a podcast and we've got all these hidden Easter eggs. So there's that. But then we're inviting everyone to build and play in this world if they so choose by writing novels, pitching ideas, voting on arcs and characters and a few other interactive story development participation elements that are quite well hidden. I'd definitely like to get a cool card game developed and we have a very easy to use platform for people to share their stories with the community. The best of those are going to get a contract and some special projects we'd like to sneak in.

That said, it's just a Post Apocalyptic Drama that's simple in its good versus evil conflict and rich in the tapestry of characters participating on an adventure that's far more lethal than Game of Thrones and as epic as Star Wars. If people want to check it out, we're offering the entire APOCALYPSE WEIRD: The Red King for free.

Thank you and I hope to see you around the Apocalypse Weird!

EEG: Thanks so much, Nick!

And writers can get involved too. Read this post by Nick where he explains how you can pitch your story to Apocalypse Weird.

To find out more about Nick's books, visit his webpage. And don't forget to sign up for the Apocalypse Weird newsletter!

Apocalypse Weird Authors:

Nick Cole
Michael Bunker
Lesley Smith
Jennifer Ellis
Chris Pourteau
Kim Wells
Forbes West
Eric Tozzi
Weston Ochse
Steven Savile
Kevin Summers
Tim Grahl
Ellen Campbell
Stefan Bolz


  1. I'm twenty percent into The Red King. As someone who reads a lot of stories that capture the onset of an apocalypse, his is high up in my list of favorites so far. You need to have a character and voice that makes the story need to be read as well as comfortable to read. This has that. It is very refreshing since I'm a fan of this genre but put down so many books that lack these traits. If the rest of the novels kick off like this Apocalypse Weird is going to be amazing.

    1. I'm 70% into the book and I agree with everything you said, Tim. Thanks so much for your comment. :-)

  2. What a cool project. Wishing The Best and Much Success.
    Juneta at Writer's Gambit


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