5 Minute Sit-Down with ‘The Walking Dead’ Novelist, Jay Bonansinga
During my weekend at Fan Fest Nashville I had the extreme pleasure of speaking with author Jay Bonansinga. The moment I started reading ‘The Walking Dead: The Rise of the Governor’ I fell in love with Jay Bonansinga and his spin on ‘The Walking Dead Universe‘. I honestly even see the Governor in a different light because of his series as well as many characters that have come from the novels. In our time together, I begged for him to start writing novels for ‘Fear the Walking Dead’ because there are so many characters that I would love for him to take create a backstory for. There are a few ‘The Walking Dead‘ characters I wish he could create some back stories for as well. Maybe we can put a whisper in the right people’s ears and we can make that happen. We touched on all kind of topics during our time together from future ‘Walking Dead’ projects to new movies he has in the works.
Rachel Bryant: Will there be any more books in ‘The Walking Dead’ novel series?
Jay Bonansinga: There will be more books but right now there are no decisions and nothing to announce. It is kind of between series.
RB: Will there ever be a novel series based on ‘Fear the Walking Dead’? To have your take on how it would be from the “beginning” of the apocalypse.
JB: That is a great question. In ‘The Walking Dead’ we have Rick get shot and enter the coma and then wakes up and it has already started. However, in ‘Fear‘ we see it from the very beginning. From day one and zombie zero nearly. Just to once again to sidestep the question, I work for Robert who certainly owns the underlying rights to “Fear the Walking Dead” but it is owned by AMC. So the chances that there will be novels about ‘Fear the Walking Dead‘ are slim than a novel about a character in the comic book that Robert created. The comic book exists in its own universe and Robert Kirkman certainly owns that universe and that is his mythology. I tell him that the comic book is like the “Rosetta Stone” everything else comes from that. But you never know because characters like Daryl Dixon are owned by AMC and are created for the show and I can probably name more if I gave it more thought but those characters like Abraham, Eugene and Rosita are straight from the comic book but then you have Tara who came from the novels. Tara came from the first novel ‘The Rise of the Governor‘.
RB: I felt that your novels gave the Governor a human side that the show and the comic book did not. To be honest I sort of liked the governor because of your novels.
JB: That is what David Morrissey (Governor) who has been very gracious and talked about it a lot that he used the books to build his character and performance. Also, not to give any spoilers about the twist at the end of the book but David also used that in his character as well.
RB: So, are there any other books that you are working on outside ‘The Walking Dead’ universe?
JB: I am working on a movie adaption of one of my books ‘Self Storage‘ and I have a contractional agreement with one of ‘The Walking Dead‘ cast to star in it. I will be working with one of my favorite actors Lew Temple (Who played Axel in season 3 at the prison and also a favorite actor of mine). I thought of Lew and I knew he would crush this. He often plays villains, psychopaths, convicts and outsiders. This story is about a dad that gets locked in a storage locker with his son and they have no water, food or lights. The lights go out. It is the holiday season, so everyone is out of town and no-one is within miles of this facility. Then to make things worse the father is a high functioning heroin addict. The dad starts going through withdraws in this locker with the son who he adores, and the son adores him.
JB: I am also working on four books on my own. I also have another one of my books ‘The Killer’s Game’ that has been in development to be made into a movie for 20 years and it looks like it is finally going to get made. It is going to star a British actor named Jason Statham.
I was truly fangirling during this interview as I am a huge fan of his writing and if by chance AMC or Robert Kirkman reads this PLEASE let Jay write some ‘Fear the Walking Dead‘ novels and please please please let him write the backstory for Daniel Salazar and Victor Strand because I truly need these details in my life. I am sure there are others out there who agree. So, if you have not read any of the novels I cannot stress enough how much you are missing out on. The plot twist with the Governor alone is worth the read but you also get to meet Tara and her family, Penny, Bob and more. I have found copies at Books-a-Million, Amazon.com, Wal-mart, and even bought them at Jay’s booth at the Walker Stalker Cons so no matter where you buy them just buy them and enjoy them as much as I did.