Euphoria-Z by Luke Ahearn‏

Luke Ahearn has over 20 years of professional game development experience and has authored numerous nonfiction books on the topic. He ran his own computer game company for ten years and currently owns MasterWerxStudios, an animatronic prop shop in Monterey, CA.

Civilization shuts down as throngs of speechless hedonists fill the streets in deadly revelry. They feel only pleasure and never pain, even as they are injured, maimed, and mutilated. Few people remain in the world unaffected, left to witness the madness unaware that things are about to get unbelievably worse.

Cooper is among the few survivors of a conspiracy to depopulate the world. One week ago, college was his biggest concern. Now he is on a dangerous journey to find his sister as an ever-present threat of nightmarish proportions engulfs the world, throwing him in the path of some of the most malicious people that ever walked the earth.

Q) What inspired you to write this story?
When I am writing this genre, I am obviously trying to convey the horrible reality of an actual post-apocalyptic world in the story; the fear, the challenges, the loneliness, and all that negative jazz. But honestly, especially as a reader, the post-apocalyptic genre appeals to my desire to be alone. I have a desire to wander free in a simple world where there are no politics, no wars, no rat race; just empty houses and large stores stuffed with everything I need to survive. And it also leaves me feeling grateful for all the good in my life.

Q) How long did it take you to write?
The first draft took one month. I really like the writing process, so I write six to eight hours a day. While the first draft is being beta read, I get the marketing process going. Soon after that, the beta feedback starts to come in. By then, I am starting the second draft, taking the readers’ feedback into consideration, and all of that can take another month.

Q) What is your favorite thing about writing?
The process. It’s like being absorbed into a vivid daydream for hours. When I write, I have a real sense of being in the story, and I just can’t get enough of that experience. Part of my process that I really enjoy is writing a character into an impossible situation and then leaving the character frozen into a state of being totally screwed for a time. I don’t sweat over the solution, but it comes to mind once in a while as I do other things. Usually, after a few hours or a day, the answer pops into my mind. It feels like the character has solved the problem in a logical and believable way that was totally unforeseeable by me. If I had sat and sweated over the solution for hours, it would seem forced at best.

Q) What is your least favorite thing about writing?
Nothing. I really love it.

Q) If you could be any famous person for one day, who would you be and why?
Any old billionaire would do. Why? So I could write a bunch of checks to myself. I wouldn’t get too greedy, just a couple of million.

Q) What is the oldest thing in your fridge and how old is it?
A small plastic gorilla figure still in the package, and it has been there for over ten years. My daughter and I had several ongoing pranks when she was much younger. One involved the repeated giving of pointless and asinine gifts, the same gift year after year for Christmas and birthdays. The prank faded away, but one of the gifts was hidden in the fridge, where it remains to this day.

Q) What can readers expect from you in the future?
A sword and sorcery novel, the first of a series entitled Dark Deeds and Black Magics. The Prequel entitled Origins is already available. I am working on a thriller that I hope to have done by October 2014.

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