Book: Mirtis Tod by Karen Wodkecategories: Book, Horror, Life, Death, Zombie, Afterlife, Ghost, Fiction, Scary, Grim Reaper, Souls, Liberty, Short Story
Karen Wodkeabout this book: The idea for Mirtis Tod came from real life examples of people who have suffered brain death but their bodies continue to survive. These sorrowful situations prompted speculation about what would happen if the opposite occurred. What if a person's body died but awareness continued? I suppose the result would normally be a ghost. However, this is not the case for Mirtis. She is unable to accept her own death and refuses to abandon her body. She is no ghost. And she is certainly not a zombie.
I gave special consideration to the character and location names in the book. This would probably fly under the radar of most readers, including me, were I not the author. Each proper name in Mirtis Tod has some significance in one way or another. One example of this is that both Mirtis and Tod mean "death" in languages other than English.
One dilemma I faced in this story is how to expand it. After all, Mirtis was dead and a dead body is only 'intact' for a short period of time. Because of that circumstance, I knew Mirtis Tod had to be a short novel. Therefore, I had to pack all of my scenes into a relatively short period of time. Another dilemma I encountered was figuring out how Mirtis would ultimately solve her problem, if a solution could even be found. This stumped me for a while.
There was some research involved in this book (ie: brain anatomy, embalming, decomposition, etc.), but because of the brevity of the project, it was not extensive.
Like probably any author, I wished to put forth certain ideas in the book. I accomplished this by means of the characters Mirtis meets during her short existence as a corpse.
Mirtis's situation is ghastly. Not only is her body failing her, but she's pursued by a dark robed figure whose intent is obviously sinister. In spite of the gravity of her situation, though, I think Mirtis's story has some positive messages. For that reason, I like to refer to Mirtis Tod as a tale of uplifting horror.
In addition to producing solo works, I am also half of the co-writing team of Wodke Hawkinson. We have released three short story collections and four novels which include Betrayed, Tangerine, and Zeke.
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