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Monday, January 30, 2012

ZOMBIES: Interview - Joy Killar - Pig-tailed Zombie Crusher extrodinaire

by Bowie Ibarra

When you're a part of the zombie apoc subculture that has taken the world by storming zombie mob, its not hard to meet many interesting people.  Our next guest is no exception.  She's the mastermind behind and is ready for the coming Zpoc.  Please welcome Joy Killar.

Full Name: Joy Killer: Pig-tailed Zombie Slayer 
Code Name/Nickname: joy 
Primary Specialty: Zombie Killing, Survival 
Secondary Specialty: Reading and review 
YAY! *dance dance*
Shoot it if it Shuffles! - I’m sure many people associate Joy Killar with gas masks. Tell us a little bit about the fascination with the iconic apoc headgear.

Joy Killar - The gas mask is a very necessary piece of survival gear for the Apocalypse. Ever since the Cold War in the 1950s it has represented our fear of Nuclear War and the need to protect ourselves from radiation and bio/chemical warfare. From that fear has sprung an amazing wealth of beautiful imagery utilizing the gas mask as an accessory. You could almost say that sub-culture is reinventing the original Pin-up girl into the new sexy Gas Mask girl.  

It is no longer just a functional survival item. Gas masks are becoming very vogue and available in fashionable models. Where once an attraction to gas masks might have labeled you a fetishist now it is becoming so common that can hardly be the case. 

For myself, I truly have a love of the covered face. That is my fascination. Whether one is covering their face with their hands or being silly with a scarf, I think the mystery of what is hidden has always been greatly intriguing. My love of the mystique translates into my wearing a gas mask in all of my pictures as it visually instills the message that we should always be prepared for Z-poc. 

ZBF - As a pigtailed zombie crusher, you must have a contingency plan for the upcoming zpoc. What is your strategy when the zpoc hits?

JK - The number one thing to do when you know it has begun: Get out of the city, get out of the city, get out of the city!!! If I could drive only one thing home to anyone, that would be it.

If you think you have to stay, then at least immediately fill your bathtub with water before everything goes off grid.

When I know the SHTF I will be hiking so I do not have to worry about vehicle congestion on the roads. I realize everyone is into their massive off-road trucks, and jeeps but I have thought about this for years. What good is a vehicle if it is stopped in traffic or if there is no fuel?

I am keeping it simple and I do not have a planned destination- because honestly, the chances of anyone making it to their "Safe Place" is unlikely unless it is very close to their original location- and if that was the case- why didn't you just stay where you were? So that is the plan: to bug out and just stay constantly on the move. Maintain my distance from everything that moves, zombie or human. 

I have an amazing Bug Out Bag (BOB) but I am doing my best to be in a place to not need it. Since I am hiking I honestly don’t want to lug a bag forever. And, the truth is, your BOB might be stolen or lost for whatever reason- the need to survive without assistance is of the utmost importance. 

(on a side note) I also have my house very well stocked in the event I cannot make it out of town. I always have over 3 months of non-perishable food and water stocked and rotated. I have taken every precaution to be prepared no matter what happens.

ZBF - Let’s hear it: Weapon(s) of choice?

JK - There are so many!

Ruger Mini-14 (tactical)
Remington 780
Glock 17 9mm
Gerber Gator machete
Cold Steel Gun Stock War Club
Smith and Wesson boot knife

Again- it is like my BOB. I plan to carry, but it is always tempered with the knowledge that any weapons I have may be stolen or lost. Also, always remember: guns run out of ammo and knives get dull. No weapon will ever be sure fire. The greatest we have is our minds.

ZBF - When the zpoc hits, are you of the camp that thinks it will eventually end over a month or two, or will it be perpetual?

KA - I have no firm beliefs. It will depend on the way it happens and the way it is handled. 

ZBF - In your opinion, what are the elements of a good zombie story?

KA - A good Zombie story starts with action right away, grabbing the reader from the start. If you lose the reader to boredom in the first few chapters, they may put the book down and not pick it back up.

There needs to be believable characters. A Zombie story is about the humans and their charisma. If I am not feeling “involved” I lose interest.

I tend to rave on books which have detailed imagery. As I read I am playing that novel like a movie in my head. The more comprehensive the description is the more enjoyable the book is for me.

The best Zombie novels and movies (to me) are the ones where nobody lives. When I am done with a book like that, I feel satisfied. It makes sense. It feels real. 

ZBF - What are some of the book titles from the zombie genre that you’ve enjoyed?

JK - Hands down my Favorite is your “Down the Road” series! I am not just saying that, it truly is. Fantastic action and I love your poetic voice.

Tony Monchinski’s “Eden” series
Z.A. Recht’s “Morningstar Saga”
A few Wellington and Keene

I am really looking forward to reading Colson Whitehead’s “Zone One”. I have heard amazing reviews. One person said that once you have read it you will never need to read another Zombie novel again.

ZBF - What are some zombie movies you’ve had fun watching?

JK - I love “Pontypool”. Perhaps it is my love of language that always returns me to this movie.
“Eaters” is UNBELIEABLE!! Came out in 2011 and I have been watching that once a month. 
“One Last Sunset” Indie film that I fell in love with.

ZBF - Do you have a bit of a gripe with some of the many stories told about the zombie apocalypse?

JK - No, I can read and watch even the worst. If it is Zombie or Apocalyptic- it is valid in my eyes. If it is really bad then it is worth some good laughs. 

ZBF - This might be a stupid question at this point, but I’m going to ask it because its standard: Zombies, Blood, or Fights?

JK - Don’t they all go together? 

ZBF - As leader of the Free World, what would you do for our country to help defend against the zombie apocalypse?

JK - Really, so much depends on how it all goes down. But here is a vague draft:

-- Close all borders, cancel any and all incoming/outgoing intercontinental transportation.
Heavily equip and launch all Naval subs with orders to circle the N. American waters and shoot on site any oncoming vessels. Also, have these as “safe”, floating military units.
-- Destroy all unknown aircraft.
-- Instantly move all Military bases into Code Red lock downs (we will need the military uninfected, up and running, as soon as the initial intense wave finalizes).
-- Retain the top biological scientists to the safest places in the country with full equipment at their disposal. 
-- Do the utmost to network the nation’s largest hospitals, sending full National Guard support to immediately control the situations surrounding those areas (orders to shoot and kill on sight).
-- Have CDC and FEMA take over all broadcasting with survival info messages.
-- Grab my “special” laptop with its top-secret codes and go into hiding.

To visit with Joy and join her wild army of zombie crushers, head on over to for zpoc talk, weapons discussions, fun pics and videos.


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Bowie Ibarra is the author of the 'Down the Road' zombie horror series from Permuted Press and Simon and Schuster.  His latest zombie story, 'The Fall of Austin', centers around the adventures of local police, military, and release prisoners from county who are thrust into the zombie apocalypse in the Texas capital.  You can read an excerpt and order the book here.

Network with Bowie and discover more of his books at his official website,


  1. Hi Joy! I recently completed East German Operations in a town called Leith, North Dakota. Craig Cobb and Kynan Dutton were incarcerated. The fact elusive Deborah Henderson was not arrested although all facts lead to her as instigator. (As soon as the Sheriff agrees to submit to a polygraph!) However, I did not leave until visiting the local cemetery. It was filled with many an American Legion marker showing they had fought a long battle there. The one armed tilting Jesus statue was indeed a sight. The dead were called to march upon the city of Leith. Shortly thereafter the locals began to suffer hallucinations.


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