Help Single-Dad Build Interactive “Zombie-land” Experience

13 Apr
zkingman
Hi there world, my name is Michael Esser and I am looking for a little help. I’m a single father who is now raising two beautiful and intelligent daughters, all on my own.

Part of my mission in life is to raise my daughters following a “lead-by-example” approach – I even started by teaching them how to buy and sell small as a way of stretching their allowances.At the same time, I am constantly reinforcing the importance of dreaming big and following through on taking smart steps towards making those dreams come true.

In 2010, I published the first of three Young Adult books about zombies and have since completed the trilogy. Seeing me speak at libraries about the books and having readers approch me in our small town, we have built a bond around these monsters. (It has even inspired me to create a series of comical zombie comic strips.)

Last summer, the father I never knew – but always searched for – passed away. I found out he was living in Bullhead City, Arizona - less than 50 miles away from me.

On October 9th, 2013 my oldest daughter Nina was killed by a drunk driver on the streets of Las Vegas, Nevada. It devasted me and her two little sisters.

I didn’t know what to do with myself other than to remain strong on the outside for my little girls. At this point I wasn’t thinking about anything more than…I don’t know. I knew we had to move on, but didn’t know what.

Then, one of my daughters said, “Zombiez!” (Morbid, I know considering the context, but read on…)

The idea that we could create a business around something like zombies, that we all loved, and that was so culturally hot right now, showed promise.

Finally, the fact that we needed to refocus ourselves and our lives and move forward – while never forgetting our losses – meant so much to beginning the healing process.

Zombiez Survival Experience

The survivors/customers enter the property and are ushered into the “zombie house” where they make their way through the oddly vacant home of the family that once lived there. (Over turned living room,  hidden surprise halls, red bedroom, ghoulish bathroom, suddenly abandoned kitchen and dining room – all featuring their own cool lighting schemes.)

Once through the home the suvivors are “armed” with paintball guns and told that the house is surrounded and that they’ll need to fight their way out. They are then ushered into the “backyard” which is really a shooting gallery that has hidden zombies and threats that they must blast until they’re out of bullets.

But, they didn’t get all the zombies? So, the group is chased out of the attraction and back into the crowds.

In addition to the Zombiez Survival Experience

We have set the area surrounding the building with 8X10 stalls that we plan to fill with vendors, swap meeters, crafters, etc. We can setup our own proprietary booth that offers “I Survived the Zombiez” t-shirts, my zombie books, signed comic strips, and photo opportunities for those visiting.

Finally, before college, I attended the local culinary academy and worked as a line cook/chef for years. Using this knowledge, we have engineered a few of our own special sauces and signature non-alcoholic drinks. We will offer these up via a “zombi-fied” hot dog cart parked in the middle of the action.

I feel that while the tourists passing through and those zombie fans from around the world that come to experience our unique offerings will be thouroughly entertained, the local kids will be given the opportunity to be part of something that is fun, positive, and drug-free. (I am a substance abuse therapist during the day and a former middle school teacher who has a passion for setting up the next generation for success by teaching them respect and honesty today.)

Proof of Concept/Market Research

When looking at designing and opening this type of establisment, I looked at several factors including; geographical location, demographics, statistics, and trends.

As far as the location is concerned, Kingman, Arizona sits right on Route 66 and is only an hour from Las Vegas, Nevada. This means that tourist traffic throughout the year is high. The property will be located on one of the city’s most popular roads, and is extremely easy to find for any visitors.

With the popularity of such culturally iconic brands like “The Walking Dead”, “World War Z”, and “The Zombie Survival Guide” – not to mention the world’s long running love affair with George A. Romero and his “Night of the Living Dead” – it is easy and justified to admit those obsessed with the undead can range from 13 to 70.

Focusing on our venture in particular, I looked at detailed statistics and current trends. I first looked at search trends for the zombie genre and found that, while pretty consistant over the last few years, more people are now searching for everything from literature and movies, to related products and merchandise.

People want to interact with this genre. Just look at the number of charitable zombie walk/runs that are held every year around the globe.

In the Southwestern part of the United States alone, I found monthly related searches on Google alone are well over 104,000 unique searches per month. Competition for the keywords related to our area of the country are low and capturable through online campaigning.

In the U.S., I found well over 12 million who have identified themselves as people who are both fans of the zombie genre and who are regularly looking to get out on the weekends. (1.5 million in AZ and 3.0 million between NV/CA alone.)

I bought the domain name  www.isurvivedthezombiez.com and designed a simple capture form for both vendors and participants and ran a series of Facebook tests. I filled all available vendor spaces for the first two months of the season within a week, while at the same time, gauging the response from would be visitors which was overwhelmingly positive in that over 60% of the 300 targets I polled reported liking the idea and looking forward to bringing themselves and friends to the grand opening.

I ran the same type of tests polling people in person, through email, and on our local Craigslist page and had similar responses.

Everyone thinks it is a unique enough idea that they’d love to visit, experience all the evolving things the place has to offer, and get a t-shirt.

Why we need your help

We need lumber, paint, and lights to build out the interior of the attraction and the vendor stalls. We need paintball guns, paintballs, supplies, and goggles. We need our hot dog cart, food supplies, t-shirt inventory, etc.

Your help will be more than appreciated, it would be life-changing.

Feel free to visit our website, message me any questions, or share our mission with your world.

http://www.isurvivedthezombiez.com

http://www.gofundme.com/isurvivedthezombiez

Thanks for your time.

Mike Esser & Girls

About these ads

Zombies are Everywhere! From Johnny Depp to Buffy the Vampire Slayers First Appearance! Only at the Deadz…

27 Sep

Calling All Comic Geekz and Collection Nerdz…

It’s that time of year again!

Time for all the ghoulz and goblinz to come out of the wood works and roam the streetz for both the upcoming Halloween season, but also the impending holiday shopping season.

As a full-fledged geek and lover of all thingz nerdy-cool…

We are bringing back our daily zombie newz postz! PLUS, we’ll be adding a few daily picks from our new ZOMBIEZ Comicz and Collectiblez store!”

We want you to start looking for the Zombiez logo when buying your comic bookz and collectible giftz online and know that you’re dealing with a fellow geek whose mission it is to scour to the ends of the planet to bring you cool stuff…so stay tuned!

Today’z Zombie Newz:

First up we’ve got… “Zombies are everywhere in Tuscaloosa! Plus our favorite zombie flicks”

Run! Outrun the zombie horde spreading in Tuscaloosa and Northport.

Seriously, though, you can dress as a zombie and run through the woods at Kentuck Park in the inaugural Bama Zombie Dash, a late afternoon run on Sunday, Oct. 27.

To win the 2.5-mile race, you have to be the first to the finish line with all three flags. Come to the park at 3 p.m. to check in and visit with some vendors before the race begins. The race will not be timed, according to its Facebook page. –>Learn More.

Next, we’ve got… “Zombie Ball offers lively time”

Like a corpse rising to feast on living flesh, the underground punk scene in the Cedar Valley is coming up for some air.

For the culmination of the two-day Cedar Valley of the Zombies event, five area punk, rock and hardcore bands will take the stage at the RiverLoop Ampitheatre in downtown Waterloo for the Zombie Ball on Oct. 5

The lineup features Lover’s Speed, Peas and Carrot, Joe Meteorite and the Space Peanuts, Growing Cold and Desire My Difference. –>Read More.


Next, we’ve got “Gurrrgle-urrrrr-blurp: Fleshmunchers invade Lakewood for 12th annual Zombie Walk, at Mahall’s 20 Lanes”

Ah, nothing like the dead bringing a little life to Lakewood.

Yowee zowee, it’s Zombie Walk!

No, I’m not talking about 2 a.m, when the bars let out — not that scary. That otherZombie Walk.

Egads and yippee-yoo…

At noon Saturday, Oldschool Sinema presents the all-day soiree will roll out a gaggle, no, make that a mob of zombiephiles dressing up like flesh-eaters for a walk in the area to raise money for the Cleveland Foodbank. –>Read More.

Next, do you want to be part of “Zombies help the homeless”

What’s with all the zombies these days?

All of a sudden, we have zombie walks, zombie runs (including one in Lynchburg on Oct. 27), zombie parties, zombie video games and an ever-growing lurching army of zombie movies.

Last year, somebody hacked into one of those blinking electric signs along a South Carolina interstate and made it say: “Zombies Ahead” (“Did you see that, George? Zombies ahead! We’d better get off at the next exit!”).

And now, zombie art to benefit the homeless. –>Read More.

Our final story, ““Plants vs Zombies”: Your Real World Zombie Equivalent Guide”

George Romero’s 1968 Night of the Living Dead didn’t invent the zombie, but it did give the zombie its contemporary coat of paint.

Romero’s films, and all subsequent media that borrowed from it, modernized the zombie into its current incarnation and every video game since can thank Mr. Romero for that. Plants vs Zombies 2 has been crushing it in the app store and has been racking up near perfect scores for weeks now. Yes, Plants vs Zombies even looks to be making the jump to next-gen when Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare gets released on the Xbox One and the Xbox 360 this Spring.

Killing the game it may be, but did you know that Popcap Games looked to the real world for inspiration making their different zombie types? True fact. Read on for our Plants vs Zombies Real World Zombie Equivalent Guide. –>Source.

Today’z Zombiez Comicz & Thrift Shop Top Pickz!

If you are looking for a real sweet gift for that someone special look no further…

Today’z top pickz out of the Zombie Vault includes:

FIRST APPEARANCE of Buffy the Vampire Slayer!

DHP Annual 1998 9.8!!!

Retail $67.20 – Sales Price starting at $27.77!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE

Nerd Alert! Marvel’s X-Men #90,

“Death of Professor X” 9.0+ Comic!

Retail $112.00 – Sales Price starting at $27.77!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE

NEW!!! TERMINATOR 2 JOHN CONNOR

5″ ACTION FIGURE W/ MOTORCYCLE

Retail $29.99 – Sale Price starting at $19.99!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE

RARE 1992 TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES

WHITE COAT “SPLINTER” FIGURE!!!

Retail $24.99 – Sale Price starting at $18.99!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE

KING SIZE AVENGERS #10

FIRST ROGUE 9.4!

1981 Avengers King-Size Annual #10

MUST HAVE!

Retail $70+ – Sale Price starting at $34.99!!!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE

Thankz for reading and as alwayz, keep your headz down and your ammunition stockpilez up!!!

Grrrrr!

Michael E. Esser

The Deadz Proudly Announces…GRAND OPENING of Zombiez Comicz and Collectiblez! Plus, the Return of Daily Deadz Zombie Newz!!!

24 Sep

Calling All Comic Geekz and Collection Nerdz…

It’s that time of year again!

Time for all the ghoulz and goblinz to come out of the wood works and roam the streetz for both the upcoming Halloween season, but also the impending holiday shopping season.

As a full-fledged geek and lover of all thingz nerdy-cool…

We are bringing back our daily zombie newz postz! PLUS, we’ll be adding a few daily picks from our new ZOMBIEZ Comicz and Collectiblez store!”

We want you to start looking for the Zombiez logo when buying your comic bookz and collectible giftz online and know that you’re dealing with a fellow geek whose mission it is to scour to the ends of the planet to bring you cool stuff…so stay tuned!

Today’z Zombie Newz:

First up we’ve got… “Miss Zombie”

Miss Zombie exists in a world where zombies are real, created by a virus that puts them in a nebulous state between alive and dead. There are various stages to the disease, with some zombies being considered more human than others. Their progression is measured in their state of decay, and the consumption of meat turns them into feral creatures. The end result is a form of domestication, and when one (Komatsu Ayaka) shows up at the home of a doctor and his wife, it’s quickly put to work, repetitively scrubbing broken tiles outside his home.

Next, we’ve got… “Till zombies do us part.”

Canadian couple fight off zombies during engagement photo shoot!

Next, we’ve got Schwarzenegger Tweeting a Photo from “Maggie” Set, Zombie Film Begins Production

Arnold Schwarzenegger doing a zombie film? You betcha. It’s called “Maggie” and he’s co-starring in the film with Abigail Breslin. He used his Twitter account to update fans from the set and included a pic.

Our final story let’s us take a sneak peek at Hollywood’s biggest annual haunted house event…

Halloween has become big business for Universal Studios.

Seems fitting. After all, Universal is one of the only studios that has traditionally not only embraced horror films, but that continues to emphasize their long history of monsters as a major part of their legacy. It is a natural fit for them. Even so, when I was part of the Halloween Horror Nights back in 1992, it was still a fairly new idea, and it was charmingly hand-made. It felt like the sort of show you would put together in your own neighborhood with a bunch of friends. It was low-tech and fun, and it was small enough that at the end of the run, everyone who had appeared in it could gather in one of the CityWalk restaurants for a small awards ceremony and some great free food and drink.

Today’z Zombie Comicz & Collectiblez Top Pickz for Sale!

If you are looking for a real sweet gift for that someone special look no further…

Today’z top pickz out of the Zombie Vault include a hand drawn (NOT A PRINT), signed and numbered, limited edition, one of a kind…

BLACK LANTERN BATMAN BLACK LANTERN BATMAN/COA “BLACK LANTERN BATMAN” BY RENOWN ARTIST “KEN HAESER” 1 OF ONLY 100!

(87/100) on a GREEN LANTERN #13 BLANK VARIANT !!! With Certificate of Authenticity!!!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE BLACK LANTERN BATMAN!!!

1974 MEGO BATMAN

VINTAGE 1974 MEGO BATMAN 8″ ACTION FIGURE! T1 / LOOSE

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE BATMAN MEGO!!!

TRUE BLOOD #1 SIGNED/REMARKED TRUE BLOOD #1 SIGNED/REMARKED TRUE BLOOD #1 SIGNED/REMARKED

RARE True Blood #1 Variant SIGNED/REMARKED by Writer Mariah Huehner! 

ONE-OF-A-KIND!!!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE SIGNED #1 TRUE BLOOD COMIC!!!


BEDLAM #2 CGC GRADED 9.8 MINT COMIC BOOK

CGC GRADED 9.8! “Bedlam #2″ SICK “Phantom Variant EXCLUSIVE!”

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE GRADED BEDLAM #2 COMIC!!!


10" VENOM!!!

BRAND NEW! MAREL UNIVERSE VENOM 10″ FULLY POSEABLE ACTION FIGURE!!!

CLICK HERE TO SEE MORE 10″ VENOM FIGURE NEW IN BOX!!!

Thankz for reading and as alwayz, keep your headz down and your ammunition stockpilez up!!!

Grrrrr!

Michael E. Esser

“AUTHOR OF “THE DEADZ” TRILOGY / COMIC WRITER & ILLUSTRATOR “MEET THE DEADZ” / PURVEYOR OF ALL THINGZ COOL AND GEEKY 

SEE YA TOMMOROW!!!

Get Ready World, it’s the Annual Scare-a-Con!!!

20 Aug

Hey DeadzHeadz,

if you’re into the horror scene

and love the gathering of other horror freaks

then check this one out at the Turning Stone in New York…

Scare-a-con

For more information on this Horror Convention –> CLICK ME <–

The Evolution of the Zombie [Infographic]

26 Jul

Long time no see zombie freaks!

Anyway, to catch you up, I’ve been busy editing “The Deadz Trilogy” into one 3-act book I’ve title “Rize of the Deadz” as well as writing a whole horde of new zombie comic strips that I am getting ready to illustrate.

The other day I got an email from this cool site in the UK, Wish.co.uk, and they asked me to share their latest zombie infographic.

So, here we go…

There’s no denying that zombies are everywhere these days. From the popularity of The Walking Dead to Brad Pitt’s summer blockbuster World War Z, you’d have to be from the land of the undead yourself to not be aware of this trend. But just where did zombies come from and when did they first become a part of our cultural awareness?

Wish.co.uk answers those questions and more in their newest infographic, “The Evolution of the Zombie.”

Courtesy of: Wish.co.uk

THE DEADZ SUGGESTZ: “10 Classic Books All Teens Should Read”

17 May

As a writer, I have an inherent desire to support any effort that encourages young – and old – readers to fall in love with reading.

But, when I was approached Paul Taylor at babysittingjobs.com about sharing their “10 Classic Books All Teens Should Read” post, I saw an opportunity to plant a seed.

You see if you checkout their post and find a certified classic book that sparks your interest or maybe feel would be perfect for someone you know, then one reader has been encouraged. But, if those readers happen to be babysitters who are sharing their new found tales with those kids they’re babysitting, then there is a whole new layer of readers being brought into the fold.

DEADZ MISSION:

  1. Visit: http://www.babysittingjobs.com/blog/10-classic-books-all-teens-should-read/
  2. Pick a book for yourself AND a teen you know.
  3. Encourage them to read AND share it with someone younger than them.

Also, if you or your young readers aspire to be an author and would like someone to give them direction or advice, feel free to send your questions to me at: mike702esser@gmail.com. I pledge to help in anyway I can.

Alright, now get out there, read a classic, and get some culture!

Michael E. Esser

Author/Writer

“The Deadz Trilogy/Rize of the Deadz, Loves Not Real, and the upcoming Boys of Youngstown”

How To Assemble Your Zombie First Aid Kit…

12 Apr

“Braaaaiinnnnsss!! Grab the machete, board up the doors and windows because it’s time to prepare for the brain eating and bloodthirsty zombies that will scuffle into our communities at any time completely unannounced. The undead will rise again, so it’s essential to pack your first aid kit now! Keep them handy at all times because no one knows when those nasty zombies will come a knockin’! Don’t pack your basic first aid kit either with just gauze, bandages, and creams. No Red Cross first aid kit or military first aid kit will cut it when the dead walk the earth!”

 

I'm such a geek...

I’m such a geek…

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