BDS Book Festival 7: The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse

Gaye LevyGaye Levy | Updated Jul 4, 2019 (Orig - Dec 18, 2014)

 

 

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It is time to present another entry in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival 7 and oh my gosh, I have been wanting to share this book with you since I first came across a pre-release excerpt last summer!

Let me say this: do no be put off by the title as Lauren Wilson, the author of The Art of Eating through the Zombie Apocalypse, answers the Book Festival  questions and awards one lucky reader with a copy of her book.

Art of Eating

But first, let me tell you a little bit about this nifty book.

First of all, the subtitle is “A Cookbook & Culinary Survival Guide”.  And yes, there are some fabulous recipes using food storage, but there are also sections on foraging, hunting, fishing, drying, smoking, building outdoor ovens and a whole lot more.  Almost every page is lavishly illustrated in color, something that is so very helpful if, for example, you are foraging in the field.

The illustrations further help you picture what you are reading and I don’t know about you, but for me, seeing something graphically greatly increases both my comprehension and reading enjoyment.

Can you tell that I love this book?  Anyway, let me turn things over to Lauren.  Enjoy interview and be sure to check out the details of this week’s giveaway below.

An Interview with Lauren Wilson, Author of The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse

Tell me about your book, The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse. What is it about?

Well, simply put, The Art of Eating is a cookbook and culinary survival guide. It traces a rough chronological zpoc narrative – taking readers through a variety of edible landscapes and scenarios as I have imagined they might look should the undead ever actually bring about TEOTWAWKI.

What type of research did you have to do while writing your book?

Lots!

I am primarily a zombie and food nerd, and before starting the book, I knew very little about emergency preparedness and had few practical survival skills to speak of. Having frequented a few zed boards in my day, I knew that there was a prepper subculture in the zombie community and as I started to flesh out the idea for the book, I realized just how important the survival component would be.

It’s one thing to tell people they should go out and catch a squirrel or forage for nuts, but it’s quite another to actually go out and do it. Because I was a total survival n00b, I wrote with fellow n00bs in mind.

Everything from basic fire skills, finding and purifying water, scavenging, foraging, hunting, fishing, basic game butchery, fermentation, and cooking without electricity to basic implements like a stovetop or oven are covered in the book. Since many books have already been written on each of these topics, I tried to summarize and provide the foundational basics for each. Readers will find many suggestions for additional reading and other resources peppered throughout the book!

I also tried to master as many of the survival techniques as I could. Even basic survival skills like fire building and starting without the aid of a lighter requires lots of patience and practice! There was continual action in my Brooklyn backyard – lots of fire building in a Hibachi, testing out various stove and oven hacks, and tending to various self-irrigated planters (SIPs) with my potting soil recipe.

I also went on several foraging tours with Wildman Steve Brill in Central and Prospect Park, which were always memorable – he is quite the entertaining character and is happy to share his wealth of information.

How long did it take to write?

A loooong while.

People always seemed surprised by the lengthy timelines that go into cookbooks and most books, in general. It took me about a year to flesh out the contents of the book and prepare a proposal. Then, once I connected to BenBella and Smart Pop, I had an additional 10 months to write the rest of the manuscript.

Every book, fiction and non-fiction, includes a message. What message do you hope my readers will take with them after reading The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse?

Great question!

I suppose I hope readers will take away the same message that I did in writing the book – that is, that most of us (ahem, hand raised) have few practical survival skills or have given much thought to emergency preparedness.

Strip away the zombies from this book and all of the skills, techniques, and strategies that I cover would be useful in most any emergency or end-of-world scenario.

Can you tell us a little bit more about yourself?

I am a professional cook and food writer.

I am also a nerd of many stripes, one of which includes all things zombie. My love of zombies came from the Resident Evil video game franchise. I had been crashing my little brother’s sleepover back in 2001, where he and a friend were playing the original Resident Evil on Playstation.

I was hooked. I would stay up all night, alone in the dark, running (or rather limping) through Raccoon City, trying to find some herb or clue or puzzle piece while also trying to not be consumed by zombies and other nefarious undead monsters. It was a blast!

The idea for the book was given to me by my dear friend Paul, who said to me offhand one day, “You’re a zombie nerd AND a food nerd, you should write a cookbook for the zombie apocalypse!” I loved the idea but sat on it for a couple of years. When I moved to New York about 4 years ago, aside from realizing I was in one of the worst places on the planet in terms of a zombie pandemic, I started to work more seriously on the concept.

And here we are today – with 17.3 million people tuning in to The Walking Dead premiere! Zombies are having a moment, as I like to say.

As an author in the survival, prepping and/or homesteading niche, what are you personally preparing for?

I am not preparing for anything specifically. Though this might sound blasphemous to some zed heads, I don’t actually think there will be a zombie apocalypse.

And I didn’t really start prepping until I started working on the concept for the book. That work also coincided with me moving to New York City. When Hurricane Irene and then Sandy hit, it sort of underlined for me that one should engage in at least some form of basic disaster preparedness.

I think the CDC emergency preparedness campaign under the guise of prepping for the zpoc was BRILLIANT. I would categorize myself as a casual prepper. I sometimes attend meetings of the New York City Preppers Network and am always floored by the level of thought and effort that many New Yorkers put into general emergency preparedness, and it pushes me to make sure I do the basics.

Do you have plans for another book?

I always have several idea pots simmering on the back burner, but nothing concrete as yet!

Is there anything else you would like to share with my readers?

Fun fact: Many people credit the “Father of the Modern Zombie,” Mr. George Romero, as imbuing zombies with their love of brains. And it’s true – he did write what many would consider the canon for the modern age of zombies, but he was not responsible for the undead’s brain predilection! That credit must go to the black comedy, Return of the Living Dead (1985), written by Dan O’Bannon.

Thank you so much for your participation in the Backdoor Survival Book Festival.

My absolute pleasure Gaye! Thanks so much for including me!

The Book Giveaway

A copy of The Art of Eating through the Zombie Apocalypse: A Cookbook and Culinary Survival Guide   has been reserved for one lucky reader.  To enter the giveaway, you need to utilize the Rafflecopter form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If for some reason the Rafflecopter widget is not working, you may also enter here.

The deadline is 6:00 PM Pacific next Tuesday with the winner notified by email and announced on the Rafflecopter in the article.  Please note that the winner must claim their book within 48 hours or an alternate will be selected.

The Final Word

I am having a lot of fun with this book and I think you will too. Good luck in the giveaway.

And me?  I am off to make some “Who’s Got Your Back Tuna Mac”.  With chicken, not tuna.  But that is a story for another day.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

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Spotlight:  The Art of Eating through the Zombie Apocalypse: A Cookbook and Culinary Survival Guide

When the zombie apocalypse tears down life and society as we know it, it will mean no more take out, no more brightly lit, immaculately organized aisles of food just waiting to be plucked effortlessly off the shelves. No more trips down to the local farmers’ market. No more microwaved meals in front of the TV or intimate dinner parties. No, when the undead rise, eating will be hard, and doing it successfully will become an art.

This is a cookbook and culinary field guide for the busy zpoc survivor. With more than 80 recipes (from Overnight of the Living Dead French Toast and It’s Not Easy Growing Greens Salad to Down & Out Sauerkraut, Honey & Blackberry Mead, and Twinkie Trifle), scads of gastronomic survival tips, and dozens of diagrams and illustrations that help you scavenge, forage, and improvise your way to an artful post-apocalypse meal.

Plus: The Preppers Guide to Food Storage

No list of books would be complete without my own book, The Prepper’s Guide to Food Storage.

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Updated Jul 4, 2019
Published Dec 18, 2014

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77 Responses to “BDS Book Festival 7: The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse”

  1. I have to say right now its Go Fish. My grandchildren love this!!

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  2. It looks like an interesting read. I’m in.

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  3. Oh.. My favorite board game is backgammon.

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  4. Monopoly

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  5. Ticket to Ride.

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  6. My granddaughter an I play Puppy-opoly a lot.

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  7. Just starting the 299 Days Series. Lots of new ideas for survival.
    The Survival cards sounds like a good start for games. I still love my homemade Pemmican bars for survival food.

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  8. Our grandchildren have us hooked on Fandooble. It’s a dice game where one has to accumulate gold coins all the while avoiding the red and green dragons AND the fandooble, who can “steal” coins from you. The one with the most gold in ther”stash” is the winner.

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  9. Scrabble!! I have only lost one game in my whole life…to an 86 year old to boot!!

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  10. Risk and Cribbage are our favorite games.

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  11. My favorite is UNO, anyone of any age can play.

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  12. Card games would be my favorite game. Hearts, ole hell, and of course, all poker games.

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  13. I think Monopoly because it is time consuming

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  14. I like scrabble!

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  15. My favorite board game is Scrabble and my favorite off grid activity is reading.

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  16. I would have to say Settlers of Catan, cribbage, and reading!

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  17. For card games, I like euchre, hand and foot, and contract rummy. Board games: Songburst. There is a 50’s/60’s version, and a 70’s/80’s version – I would really prefer a 60’s/70’s combo. Oh, well!

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  18. Apples to Apples is also a good family game..even fairly young children can play.

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  19. Our off-grid amusements are card games, board games (Scrabble and Boggle are current faves) and just sitting around sharing stories of our past with the kids, and planning for the zombie-pocalypse.

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  20. Yahtzee has been my families favorite for years.

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  21. I would love to win a copy of this wonderful book so I can learn more about how to cook my preps and add foraged foods.

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    • My favorite grid down past time is reading all the books I’ve collected at thrift stores.

  22. Euchre

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  23. Pinochle is our favorite family game.

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  24. Reading

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  25. Reading and Farmopoly

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  26. Love this site, really learning so much form you!!!!

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  27. Clue…

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  28. Card ‘game’ called Conflicted.

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  29. favorite board game? right now, it might be Wits and Wagers.

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  30. I’d have to say, at the moment, my favorite game is Rummikub.

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  31. I don’t know if the rest of the world will know of this, I didn’t know about it until I married into my hubby’s family, but there is a marble game called wahoo. We play it on a homemade board. It can take hours and lots of ‘picking on’ each other. My second favorite is dominoes, but then monopoly is a classic too…hmm I can’t narrow it down to just one. lol

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  32. I love to play all sorts of games. I just love life

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  33. Backgammon!

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  34. I liked the Zombie’s,the season of the witch – song.

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  35. I would love to have this book. I love learning new recipes and ideas.

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  36. Gosh there are so many – cards from straight rummy to pinochle. For board games we love The Game of Life

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  37. Scrabble!

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  38. I play a lot of solitaire since it’s just me.

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  39. Our family’s game of choice is one called “Miserable Misery” lots of fun for all!!

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  40. scrabble or chess

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  41. Scrabble or Sorry with kids.

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  42. Cribbage

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  43. I like backgammon or cribbage if there’s someone else there to play, solitaire if I’m by myself.

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  44. My favorite board game is Monopoly (the whole family loves to get together and play) and my favorite card game is Spades (again the whole family plays and we take turns partnering with each other). I have 2 unopened Monopoly games in my storage and probably 20 decks of cards. I figure the cards can be used for playing and trading.

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  45. It would probably be Boggle or Spades or poker. I want to try Ticket to Ride.

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  46. My family and I are hooked on a marble game called Wahoo. I also love to play Uno and I love to read

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  47. Too many to name but enjoy playing pictionary always good for a laugh.

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  48. Monopoly is the all time favorite for board games, cribbage and poker games for cards, jenga for some noisy variety and books or puzzle books for quite times. I think having a variety of off grid entertainment is important to reducing stress and maintaining your sanity.

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  49. The board game is Twixt and card game is skip-bo.

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  50. This book looks great! Thank you for highlighting and sharing it with us!

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  51. Ticket to Ride, Scrabble and Monopoly.

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  52. Reading is always my preferred off-grid amusement, but I also enjoy Monopoly, and I used to play a ton of canasta (which I need to brush up on!).

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  53. I like all the personalized Monopoly games out there. I’m not much for card games. We lost our family Monopoly game set in a flood a while ago so guess it’s time to get a brand new one!

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  54. My favorite card game is Canasta but Gin Rummy comes in a close second. For a board game I would probably pick backgammon, chess, checkers, or scrabble.

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  55. Anything to with cards

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  56. Our family likes the board game “LOGO”, we try not to play it too often, or we’ll run out of questions, that’s the downside. One of my all time favorite games is Yatzee! It’s fun, and makes your brain work, too. 🙂

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  57. Sounds great I already have several books on medicinal foods/herbs and herbal antibiotics, have some tinctures made up and about a months worth of food/water/cat food and emergency supplies, but hey I live in south florida-always hurricane prepared

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  58. Reading, serious and fun stuff, Scrabble, and card games are my choices. This book sounds like fun and serious stuff!

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  59. We read books aloud to each other, play trivial games and cards.

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  60. Cribbage!!! I have taught all 3 of my boys to play and we all love it 🙂 They love it the most when they can beat Mom!! Ha

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  61. Cards, gives a variety of options both solo and with others.

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  62. all,love me some cooking

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  63. Off grid entertainment: reading

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  64. Favorite card game: War (with children, of course)
    Favorite board game: Monopoly, but I combined the money from 4 games so my bank is HUGE. LOL

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  65. Battleship…

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  66. Word games….boggle with younger players and Scrabble with older ones!

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  67. Yahtzee or Uno

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  68. We are definitely a “Sorry” family!

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  69. pandemic

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  70. Chess is the only every-man game for me. For a more involved extended session, I prefer Risk, Stratego, Settlers of Catan and D&D.

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  71. We love Scrabble.

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  72. I like scrabble, Trivial pursuit and euchre.

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  73. I love to play solitaire it’s fun.

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  74. Timing. As we went shopping today, I glanced down at the creek as we drove by and remembered back to a time when as a child, we went fishing and my dad pulled clay from the riverbank, cleaned the fish leaving the scales on, then proceeded to encase the fish in the clay and lay it on the fire. O BOY! That was some great tasting fish! So I’ve been wondering…can you do crayfish the same way? Looks like a trip to the creek is in my future to look for the clay AND catch what goes in the clay. 😉 For sure I know that no zoms will be invited to my table. 😉 Thanks Gaye.

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  75. I love scrabble but any solitaire card game is good.

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  76. Suduko. Hand and foot (card game). Lots if books to read. Yarn to crochet

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