6 Undead Sources Of Inspiration For Writers Who Are Zombie Fans

6 Undead Sources Of Inspiration For Writers Who Are Zombie Fans

As a post-apocalyptic writer myself, I know the struggle of not having ideas. I'm here to help!

We've all been there; sat down, staring at a blank white screen or sheet of paper, struggling to come up with some brilliant idea for a new undead tale that will wow people for centuries... and disappointed when nothing comes to mind. Don't worry. You're not alone. Post-apocalyptic fiction is my favorite kind of fiction, so I understand the struggle of trying to come up with fresh new takes on shambling monsters and hardened survivors. I still have a ways to go, but over the years I have racked up quite the repertoire to draw from whenever I'm coming up blank. Many of these are my personal collections of songs and pictures and thus tailored to my interests, but feel free to look into others!

1. Writing Prompts

I'll start with my favorite. Writing.prompt.s has an Instagram and a Tumblr, and he's definitely worth checking out. My favorite thing to do is mash together a couple of different prompts, then ask myself, "How can I add zombies to this?"

2. Music

Music is a wonderful way to get creative juices flowing. I have a zombie apocalypse Spotify playlist that I like to play whenever I'm trying to think of some horror. Not all of the songs have to do with the undead per se; Fort Minor's "Remember the Name," for example, may be twisted to describe a lone zombie hunter's journey to fame. You can choose to reinterpret the lyrics however you wish in order to create a new, original story.

Lyrical music isn't the only way to go! Instrumental music by bands like Audiomachine and Two Steps from Hell are also pretty awesome background soundtracks to any post-apocalyptic story.

3. Pinterest

I have a couple of Pinterest boards that I sometimes scroll through when I'm at a loss for ideas. From text posts and short prompts that I've saved, to interesting pictures that I can imagine myself explaining, to even the "creepy image" search that generates more odd and unexplained photos, Pinterest is an amazing platform from which to draw inspiration.

4. Your Surroundings

It's easy to forget that the outside world actually exists, but sometimes it's a perfect way to spark ideas! What's hiding in that dark thicket in your backyard? What mysterious creature could be forming that odd shadow cast onto the building in front of you? Why is there a chair on the roof? Is the guy at the customer service desk really human?

5. Dreams

I am one of those people that keeps a dream journal. On the rare occasion that I get enough sleep to dream, I definitely don't want to forget the odd stuff that my unconscious mind manages to come up with. Try getting into the habit of keeping a small notebook and pencil by your bed. Or, you can do what I do and keep a Word document of "dreams" on your phone. Slowly, you'll build your own personal database of odd and whimsical stories that you can write something off of.

6. The Zombie "Template"

Last but not least, the idea of the zombie itself. What if you messed around with the “template” of what we know as a zombie? Your new creature will still have to have some things that will give humans a chance to survive, but otherwise, have a field day. The stereotypical zombie tends to be a slow, shambling creature that will rot slowly. It moans for reasons unknown to people, is stronger than its living counterparts and has an insatiable hunger for human flesh. It reproduces by biting humans. It acts independently of other zombies, but will also not shy away from traveling in a large group. The only warnings of its approach are the sound of its shuffling footsteps and its groans, and the only surefire way to kill it is to destroy its brain somehow.

Ask yourself what you can do to change this template. For example, a recent short story of mine features what the narrator calls “Gross Dudes,” which are each walking shells that used to be humans. They lack eyes and have nostril slits and a lipless hole in place of a nose and mouth. They travel in small groups and secrete purple gas that induces paralyzing fear in any nearby humans. When they open their mouth, there is a mysterious purple glow in place of a throat. They move slowly and have short attention spans.

The key is to making your own post-apocalyptic creature is to ask yourself basic questions about its appearance, mannerisms, and quirks.

  • What does it sound like?
  • How does it move?
  • How do humans know there is one nearby?
  • Does it walk on two legs?
  • Does it have fur?
  • How are each of its five senses?
  • How does a human transform into one?
  • What does its skin look like?
  • Can it glow?
  • Does it travel with others?
  • Does it have a mouth, and if so, what does it look like?
  • Does it secrete anything?
  • Can it alter a human’s mental state?
  • How intelligent is it?
  • How does it hunt?
  • How does a human kill it?
  • Can it speak? What does its voice sound like?

After that, put a whole bunch of them in your story! The possibilities are only as limited as your imagination.

Cover Image Credit: Flickr / David Simmons

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80 Nicki Minaj Lyrics Perfect For Instagram Captions

"Yo, you seen my last pic, go double-tap that for me."

Nicki Minaj lets the world know about her amazing Instagram skills in Beyonce's "Flawless," when she raps "Instagram another flawless pic." Do you have a #Flawless Instagram picture but need a clever caption to go with it? The Queen of Rap has plenty of Insta-worthy song lyrics.

*(Some lyrics have been edited to keep this article "PG". Feel free to look up the real Nicki Minaj lyrics if you hate the radio edit.)

When you want to diss a hater:

    1. "You couldn't get a fan if it was hangin' from the ceilin."
    2. "I'm throwing shade like it's sunny."
    3. "I'm in my own lane, you ain't in my category."
    4. "These (girls) couldn’t test me even if their name was Pop Quiz."
    5. "Yo, people will love you and support you when it's beneficial. I'ma forgive, I won't forget, but I'ma dead the issue."
    6. "Not that I don't got good vision, but I don't see competition."
    7. "I’m Angelina, you Jennifer. Come on (girl), you see where Brad at."
    8. "I look like "yes" and you look like "no"."
    9. "But if you're ugly it's a no text zone."
    10. "If you are my rival, then that means you're suicidal."
    11. "Shout out to my haters, Sorry that you couldn't faze me."
    12. "Trash talk to 'em then I put 'em in a Hefty."
    13. "Like I mean I don't even know why you girls bother at this point. Like give up, it's me, I win, you lose."
    14. "All these haters mad because I'm so established."
    15. "Competition? why yes I would love some."

When you want to tell people how awesome you are:

    16. "If I'm fake I ain't notice, cause my money ain't."
    17. "You can hate me, but why knock my hustle? I'ma be the queen, no matter how they shuffle."
    18. "Let me make this clear, I’m not difficult, I’m just ’bout my business."
    19. "I'm feelin' myself."
    20. "Excuse me honey, but nobody's in my lane."
    21. "Put me on a dollar cause I'm who they trust in."
    22. "I don’t say “Hi”, I say “Keys to the Benz.”"
    23. "I've been hot since flip phones" "Running this game for 5 years. Guess that's why my feet hurt."
    24. "Hotter than a middle eastern climate."
    25. "My money’s so tall that my Barbies gotta climb it."
    26. "No, I'm not lucky, I'm blessed, yes."
    27."I ain't gotta compete with a single soul."
    28. "'X' in the box, cause ain't nobody checking me."
    29."Excuse me, I'm sorry, I'm really such a lady."
    30. "Honestly I gotta stay as fly as I can be."

When you're hanging with your clique:

    31. "Cherish these nights, cherish these people. Life is a movie, but there will never be a sequel."
    32. "I’m with some hood girls lookin’ back at it."
    33. "We dope girls, we flawless. We the poster girls for all this."
    34. "Pretty gang, always keep them (boys) on geek."
    35. "The night is still young, and so are we!"
    36. "If you ain’t on the team, you playin’ for team D, ’Cause we A-listers, we paid sisters."
    37. "Pretty (girls) only could get in my posse."
    38. "Cause we the mean girls, y-yes we so fetch."
    39. "We fresh to death, down to the shoes."
    40. "Ain't at no wedding but all my girls cake tops."
    41. "Got a whole bunch of pretty gang in my clique."
    42. "Clap for the heavyweight champ, me, But I couldn't do it all alone, WE."
    43. "Put your drinks up, It's a celebration every time we link up."
    44. "I'm with some flawless (girls) because they be mobbin' pretty."

When you're hanging with your significant other:

    45. "He tryna kick it like a ninja."
    46. "He could tell that I was wifey material."
    47. "Ayo, I just wanna be your first go to."
    48. "You got spark, you, you got spunk. You, you got something all the girls want."
    49. Find me in the dark, I'll be in the stars, Find me in your heart, I'm in need of your love."
    50. "They holler at me, but it's you, you."
    51. "I'm not living right, I’m not living if you’re not by my side."
    52. "I just wanna be somebody that can add to, your wife, be a friend, be a teacher and a fan, too."
    53. "I just wanna be your favorite."
    54. "He was the realest, I was the baddest, we was the illest."
    55. "I know you can save me and make me feel alive."
    56. "Yes I'll be your girl, forever your lady, You ain't ever gotta worry, I'm down for you baby."
    57. "Baby you my everything, You all I ever wanted."

When you're single and loving it:

    58. "You could be the king, but watch the queen conquer!"
    59. "Thats why I'm crowned queen, and I ain't looking for the prom king."
    60. "I like independent, like July 4th."
    61. "I ain't never need a man, to take care of me."
    62. "He be like, "Yo, you so legendary", But he can tell just by my face he ain't getting any."
    63. "I am not Jasmine, I am Aladdin."
    64. "I don't even brake when I'm backing up, I'll swerve on a (boy) if he acting up."
    65. "So many boys in here where do I begin?"

When you're just living life:

    66. "I never worry, life is a journey. I just wanna enjoy the ride."
    67. "Tonight is the night that I'ma get twisted."
    68. "I’mma keep it movin', be classy and graceful."
    69. "So make sure the stars is what you aim for, make mistakes though."
    70. "And we gon' hangover the next day. But we will remember this day."
    71. "My only motto in my life is don't lose."
    72. "Take me, or leave me, I'll never be perfect. Believe me, I'm worth it."
    73. "I believe that life is a prize, but to live doesn't mean you're alive."
    74. "I wish that I could have this moment for life."
    75. "If I scream, if I cry, It's only 'cause I feel alive."
    76. "I can't believe it, it's so amazing. This club is heating, this party's blazing.""
    77. "It's so amazing, I figured out this world is ours for the taking."
    78. "I am not a girl that can ever be defined."
    79. "I got next, I'm gonna shine."
    80. "This is my moment I just feel so alive."

Cover Image Credit: Nicki Minaj

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