So I decided to change the title of my zombie book from No Tomorrow back to Frantic, which was a name I wanted to use for an earlier more road trip-y zombie story. It was a decision made just a few minutes ago while driving and listening to the Metallica song of the same name.
Regardless of fast versus slow zombies, road trip versus “we’re gonna stay put and hunker down“, it still rings in my head as a zombie anthem, even though I’ve heard it was really about James Hetfield’s past experience with alcoholism.
And, of course, this meant I had to go back and strike out the posts about “old” Frantic so there’s no confusion with “new” Frantic, but that’s okay because the old story didn’t survive while this new one, I think, does have staying power with it.
And speaking of staying power, even though “old” Frantic has so far lasted longer than “new” Frantic, I’m very proud of how I feel with this current version focusing on a small town surviving rather than a ragtag group roaming and looking for safety. It might have to do with the fact that I got an actual plot down this time. Before, I let my mind wander. Although the first draft of this new version also had me wandering around, I at least had a more stable idea when I started, even though that idea changed dramatically by the time I got to the end.
Writers are often categorized as pantsers or plotters. Pantsers let inspiration take them like they’re flying by the seat of their pants. Plotters, on the other hand, figure out the road ahead before they start. I think I’m both. I’m a pantser at the start, using the first draft as an enormous brainstorming session, but when I have the idea, making a plot – even a very loose plot, a list of a few dozen key events in the story – helps keep me on track as I move ahead.