BIO: Merrill grew up in Rhode Island, in the northeast part of the United States (also known as New England). He’s an avid fan of the local professional sports teams such as the Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots. He loves Marvel comics, and most things horror, Sci-Fi, and paranormal related. Merrill retired from a twenty-five year Law Enforcement career in the North Texas area and now resides in East Texas during the winters and sometimes in New England for the rest of the seasons. Along with his wife, he enjoys the outdoors, traveling and spending time with thier orange tabby named Tiger and our Chiweenie dog named Vinny.  

GJ: Can you tell me about Wicked Awake and how it differs from the main pack of zombie apocalypse novels?

MD: Not that mine is a zompoc novel with some humour interwoven, but I believe I injected an extra-generous amount of levity into my story. So much so, that one person who read my book so far commented that “while this novel is extremely clever and brisk-paced, the narrative is witty. Even when horrifying!”

I like that he chose those two words WITTY and HORRIFYING to describe my work, as this is exactly what I was aiming for. If I was a rock group instead of an author, I might be compared to the band Tragedy, a metal band that put their own spin on Bee Gees songs. Or better yet, I might be more like that Death Metal Band that plays Weird Al Yankovic tunes. Is there such a band? There should be!

I also attempted to make WICKED AWAKE smarter than the average zombie book by applying a great level of detail, science, and research. I’ve also been told my novels are not typical for this genre in that I have also included touches of crime stories, superhero action and some paranormal-icies in there as well. 

GJ: Can you tell me about your journey to publishing your first novel?

MD: I guess you could say it all started about eight years ago. My wife was the one who encouraged me to start this project. But there were a couple of major setbacks along the way which slowed me down. I had a brain tumour removed a few years back (maybe that’s why I had, and still have, some of these deranged story ideas?). Just a year later my wife unexpectedly and suddenly passed away from a heart attack. I went through some very dark and blurry times since then. The drinking and depression began to take its toll on me.

I have since remarried to a wonderful lady who was very supportive of me finishing up what I had started and I retired from my Law Enforcement career. Now, my writing has proven therapeutic, easing and replacing my self destructive ways. Having found that new sense of peace and back on track again, here I am!

GJ: How do you balance other work commitments, family life and writing?

MD: Being retired from my Law Enforcement career has allowed me the time to do what I love, write this disgusting horror all day long! Fuelled by fantasies of fame but also with hopes of entertaining or scaring the crap out of my readers. Or perhaps both.

Imagine waking up with the hangover of all time as someone pounds on your door telling you to get out quick. You have to evacuate to where? From what? That’s the premise of this story as it unfolds in sleepy Cornwall. Their terrifying flight to safety is not guaranteed. Behold the undead risen.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Review of IN THE END series

Follow the link to join the fight for survival now! 

GJ: If you had to bug out of your house because of an impending zombie apocalypse and could only take three items with you to help you survive then what would they be and why?

MD: 1. A multi-tool of some sorts that has all of those nifty tidbits attached.

2. a tomahawk hatchet to slay the pancreas pirates as well as for many other purposes

3. I gotta have my coffee!   

GJ: What does a typical writing day look like for you?

MD: Pretty simple. Wake up, make a shit load of coffee (are you seeing a theme here?), eat breakfast (usually three sunny side up eggs and two pork sausage links). Then I proceed to drink said dark roasted black lava, sit down in my office and make the magic happen. Or rather; make the filth flow. 

GJ: What do you consider to be the most difficult part of the entire process of getting a novel to your readers?

MD: It was definitely not the actual writing of the book itself. It has been everything since then; sending out over a hundred emails and queries to literary agents and publishers only to be rejected by many, those who at least had the courtesy to respond. Many of them don’t reply at all. So I published my work myself. And when you are an indie-author, that means the only one out there to promote your work is yourself. So then you come to rely upon social media to get the word out, and that alone is quite challenging! 

GJ: What inspires you to write zombie apocalypse novels?

MD: I have always loved all types of horror shows and movies. But I knew I wanted to start with a zombie novel series, since my favourite horror flavour has always been zombies. I would load up on Walking Dead shows and the movies, always telling my wife and kids how those stories could have been better (for instance; the zombies in World War Z were way too fast, everyone knows the real DEAD are slow! George Romero knew..). So my wife suggested that since I was such an expert, I should write my own novel. At first I thought she was joking, but she wasn’t- so I did it!

GJ: What do you consider has been your most effective marketing activity so far?

MD: I have had a pretty nice following on Instagram but I really feel like being one of the featured authors in the awesome Written Dead group on Facebook which has helped introduce me to a lot of great people; writers and readers, who I might not have met otherwise. This has been very beneficial to me. 

GJ: What can we expect from you this year and next year?

MD:  You should see Wicked Awake available in audiobook format very soon, it is in production now through ACX and with an awesome narrator named CJ Grey. Hopefully in September I will be dropping Wicked Awake 3 (of the 6 book series). I have another horror novel I am working  on as well. This one is a non-zombie, sickening love story that should be quite unique and will hopefully come out by February of 2022. Wicked Awake 2 and then Wicked Awake 3 should be developed into audio books sometime in 2022 as well.     

GJ: Thank you Merrill for taking the time to speak with me today. If you want to check out Merrill’s work then check out the links below.

Wicked Awake on Amazon:

Merrill’s Amazon Author Page:



Goodreads Author Page:

If you want to mix with other people who’ve read my books, now is your chance. I’ve bowed to pressure and set up a fan page for my work and you can join by clicking the link below:


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