UltraRunning and Zombies with Author Camille Picott

Undead Ultra – Ultrarunning and the Zombie Apocalypse

What do zombies and ultra marathons have to do with each other? We find out in this week’s episode where we talk with Undead Ultra book author and ultra runner, Camille Piccott, as we honor Zombie Awareness month in May. We discuss Camille’s 3 zombie books with ultra running heroes: Dawn Patrol, Undead Ultra, and Dorm Life. We are in for a fun and provocative discussion of the merits of ultra-running and the apocalyptic potential of zombies taking over the earth.

Camille Picott has been writing stories since she figured out how to turn on her family’s Apple IIe computer and wrangle a floppy disk into the drive. She loves nothing more than penning an epic action scene or pushing a character to his limits. Her most popular series is Undead Ultra, a zombie apocalypse series that pits ultrarunners against zombies.

Running absurdly long distances

When Camille isn’t writing or spending time with her family, she loves to run absurdly long distances. It’s not unusual to find her hitting the trail in her running shoes long before the sun rises or cranking out miles (and stories!) on her treadmill desk. She considers sleep optional and largely overrated.

Questions Camille is asked:

3:17 First Four:

  1. How old are you?
  2. Where were you born?
  3. Where do you live now?
  4. How long and how far have you been running?

3:47 What’s your background with running?

4:24 What got you interested in the combination of writing, zombies, and running ultra distances?

5:30  What is the title of your book series?

5:54 What is the story line?

7:08 How do you develop characters?

8:48 How did you come up with the character ‘Frederico’?

11:36 What is the character conflict within your books?

13:47 What about in Dorm Life?  

15:05 How much of your writing is drawn from your life?

16:14 Could you read a section from Undead Ultra?

18:34 What’s happening in that scene?

19:10 Could you read from Chapter 53 that describes why anyone would run an Ultra?

21:04 How is running a character in your books and in your life?

22:14 How do Ultra Runners handle a ‘Code Brown’?

24:08 What are your thoughts on sleep deprivation and ultra running?

26:38 What is Zombie Month?

29:02 What about the sequel Dorm Life?

31:52 How did you research the running course for the book ?

36:28 Do you have a bigger message beyond your books?

37:28 How does ultra running bring together various different people?

39:44 What else can you tell us about your books?

44:15 Any final thoughts to share?

45:33 Final Kick Round:

  1. What is your favorite local training run or outing (location, starting point, parking, distance, terrain and safety issues)?
  2. Favorite book(s), video or resource?
  3. Who or what would you like to have featured on the Run To The Top podcast?

Quotes by Camille:

“One of the fun things about apocalypse fiction is that it either brings out the best in you or the worst in you; that Lord of the Flies mentality.”

“ ‘It’s not fair to boil running down to a form of corporeal therapy. Yes, there’s a twisted embracing of pain, but there have been countless times I ran for the simple love of the sport. Escape, therapy, joy… Running is all these things. How can one simple act have so many facets and such deep meaning in my life? The person I am is inextricably enmeshed with a verb.’ “

“One of the things I wanted to tackle in this book is the relationship that runners have with running. It’s a character in all of our lives and we all have relationships with this sport that we love and it does change.”

“I do practice sleep-deprivation on a regular basis. I’m a busy person, I have a lot of things that I’m passionate about. And then, of course, there’s obligations in life. I work full time and I write at night and I get up very early so that I can run and train and I have trained myself to function on little sleep.”

“I definitely think that we are all flawed and no matter how old we get and how many things we figure out, we still have problems, we still have things we’re trying to work through. Conflicts within and conflicts without.”


Take a Listen on Your Next Run


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Mentioned in this podcast:

Run To The Top Winners Circle Facebook Community

RunnersConnect Facebook page


Sweaty Betty

Camille’s Amazon Author Page

Camille’s Website

Video – Undead Ultra – Director’s Cut

Zombie Research Society

The Great Redwood Trail Project

The Lost Coast Trail

Lake Sonoma Trails

Book: Ultramarathon Man by Dean Karnazes

Book: The Way Of The Runner by Adharanand Finn


Follow Camille on:




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