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Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse
Student extracts: Reporting II
“I lit a match and threw it on one of them,”
said Police Chief Greg Orlandor. He led the
attack on the Undead and was the ...
After entering the vault door, we heard the sharp sound of a 9-millimeter
handgun burst three rounds. The commando and I l...
The first symptoms
were severe intense hot
flashes followed by
nonstop sweating.
From the moment that he took a bite into ...
Even though the
subjects didn’t show
any symptoms for a
day after they were
injected, the
laboratory was able
to keep the ...
There were scratches on my wrists, my face, my forearms, and my back.
The door wasn’t going to hold much longer. The gun. ...
…they haven’t been my loved ones
since the day evil disguised as an illness
hit the small farm only a few days after
our a...
…outside my battered apartment building, the world has turned into a battleground.
The hot air reeks of smoke from fires b...
“If people will just
stay inside, they will
be much safer,” said
Albert Clark.
“Eat pie this holiday
season, not brains!”
...
A violent and slowly marching
army, void of uniform other than
the utter absence of life,
decimated military forces and
to...
Now, 21 days later, I sit in desolate solitude among the Indian Paintbrush,
studying my surroundings with a book of botany...
I begin to see shadows move. Through the trees, they begin to appear. One, two, three, four.
Little shadows zip from side ...
Taylor’s was serving drinks called jaagerbombs, which scared off the zombies.
As the zombies scurried away, more and more ...
There is no music now, only the dreary pitter patter of rain. Windows are almost uniformly boarded up and
the pizza place,...
I am sending this transmission with full knowledge that
I may be dead by the time it gets read.
My mind is clouded as I he...
Three infected were surrounding the relic of a life Steele hardly remembers.
Despite his brush with
near death, Steele is
...
The stadium now serves as one of the largest mass graves in the world.
It stands ominously silhouetted on the outskirts of...
Mark Weber, 23, reportedly attempted to eat the brains of his fellow classmates in a
Reporting II class on the top floor o...
One studentattempted to restrain Weber, with sources revealing him as Brian Perry, 24, a
senior at the university. Perry’s...
Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse: student extracts
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Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse: student extracts

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Creative writing assignment given to my Reporting II class in November 2015 at the University of Oregon. This format encouraged descriptive writing, different narrative perspectives and consideration of sources, all of which are applicable to *real* reporting assignments.

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Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse: student extracts

  1. 1. Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse Student extracts: Reporting II
  2. 2. “I lit a match and threw it on one of them,” said Police Chief Greg Orlandor. He led the attack on the Undead and was the first to try fire when gunshots proved unsuccessful. “He lit up real quick and started screaming.” Once the Undead was on fire and distracted, police could use a firefighter’s axe to chop off the Undead’s head. “It wasn’t pretty,” said Orlander.“Heads were rolling across the University of Oregon quad.” …. The origin of the Undeadremains unknown. Police estimate 50 Undeadwere involved in the attack, but aren’t disclosing any information about motive. Investigations are underway and classes at the University of Oregon are cancelled until further notice.
  3. 3. After entering the vault door, we heard the sharp sound of a 9-millimeter handgun burst three rounds. The commando and I locked eyes for a quick moment and knew we had to be swift….. The last commando’s M-4 rifle barked aggressively as it fired upon the Undead. He killed off all but one. He pulled the trigger but was met with a click of an empty magazine. It was my time to put the machete to work. I lunged forward, and with one smooth swipe, I took off the Undead’s head at the neck.
  4. 4. The first symptoms were severe intense hot flashes followed by nonstop sweating. From the moment that he took a bite into the juicy, scrumptious greasy piece of bacon, he started to act in a bizarre way. After that the eyes would turn bright red with red tears dripping down their pale white hollow face.
  5. 5. Even though the subjects didn’t show any symptoms for a day after they were injected, the laboratory was able to keep the infected volunteers under maximum security. That’s what I learned in the New York Times. Well, at least when there was a New York Times. Ultimately, one of the volunteers bit a security guard, causing the entire staff to become zombies in less than two days. They foamed at their mouths, scratched their skin until it bled, and coughed up an orange substance every hour.
  6. 6. There were scratches on my wrists, my face, my forearms, and my back. The door wasn’t going to hold much longer. The gun. I had a gun. A journalist with a gun. She laughed at me when I bought it. Now I was about to use it on her. I fired repeatedly at the door, crying louder and louder after each pull of the trigger. If it were not for the blaring sirens, the esoteric screams, and horrid screeches that were coming from outside, you would have thought I just got of got out of a wild sex session with two French models. I wish that was what happened, but no. I had just killed my wife.
  7. 7. …they haven’t been my loved ones since the day evil disguised as an illness hit the small farm only a few days after our arrival. Genetics that once bound us together were warped into something God himself has turned his back on… At least we know we had the chance to give our family a funeral. We chose cremation, like they had all wanted.
  8. 8. …outside my battered apartment building, the world has turned into a battleground. The hot air reeks of smoke from fires blazing in the distance, as the sound of gun shots continuously pierce the haze…. Thatwas twelve hours ago, now I sit here unsure of what is going to happen. As the clock creeps closer to midnight, I wonder what tomorrow will bring. The only thing I know is that this is going to be one long night.
  9. 9. “If people will just stay inside, they will be much safer,” said Albert Clark. “Eat pie this holiday season, not brains!” “When he got back [from Houston], I made a joke that he looked like a zombie. I mean he said he spent the whole plane ride studying,” said Josh Hamlin, 20, a friend of McEntyre. “I never imagined he would become one for real.”
  10. 10. A violent and slowly marching army, void of uniform other than the utter absence of life, decimated military forces and took hundreds of civilians hostage. In a small town in Oregon, smoke still lingers. The dust of buildings once soaring toward the sky, clogs visibility for 20 feet in front of you and blocks out the stars. Residents, though, seem grateful for the especially dark night. It makes it harder to see the destruction.
  11. 11. Now, 21 days later, I sit in desolate solitude among the Indian Paintbrush, studying my surroundings with a book of botany I found recently. During the daylight hours, I like to come here, to the highest peak in sight, and write. It is the only thing that keeps me levelheaded. It is my escape. The innocent town of Ashland, robbed by havoc herself, remains merely a memory.
  12. 12. I begin to see shadows move. Through the trees, they begin to appear. One, two, three, four. Little shadows zip from side to side. Is it them? A little white and brown furry body jumps at my legs. Teddy, my mom’s terrier, squeals at me. I wrap him up and my tears are licked off my face by his warm tongue. His body heaves with his excited breaths. They’re here, They’re okay. I can’t control it now. I sprint through the trees, Conor behind me. I feel the pine trees hit my face, my blonde hair getting caught and tugged. My chest hurts as I breathe in the cold air in frantic breaths, gasping from the sobs. The sound of leaves caught underfoot fills my ears. Footsteps. I hear them. They’re running too.
  13. 13. Taylor’s was serving drinks called jaagerbombs, which scared off the zombies. As the zombies scurried away, more and more victims went into Taylors for safety. Little did they know this would become a giant party. The owners of Taylor’s commented on the situation saying “we are always the safest place on campus, but we didn’t think we could stop a zombie apocalypse!” The screams were not the typical roaring cheers you hear during a football game, but more of a fight for safety.
  14. 14. There is no music now, only the dreary pitter patter of rain. Windows are almost uniformly boarded up and the pizza place, once known as Sizzle Pie, now serves as a makeshift town hall. The memories of Eugene as it once was still haunt the remaining citizens. Word from communities outside of the I-5 corridor is slow, but reports the same story over and over again. Reanimated dead. Army intervention. Bombs dropped. Streets on fire. Lingering, walking death.
  15. 15. I am sending this transmission with full knowledge that I may be dead by the time it gets read. My mind is clouded as I hear the far-off cries of struggle. My skin has turned a nasty shade of grey. Am I turning? I haven't got much time left. To whomever receives this message, please relay to my family that there was nothing I could do.
  16. 16. Three infected were surrounding the relic of a life Steele hardly remembers. Despite his brush with near death, Steele is already planning his next recovery mission. To him, the danger is just another part of world we now live in, “I may have been near death, but we are all near death now. It’s really just a matter of time before we end up like them.”
  17. 17. The stadium now serves as one of the largest mass graves in the world. It stands ominously silhouetted on the outskirts of the city, the unrelenting stench of rotting flesh carries for miles. The victims of the last breach were 10-year- old twins Ellie and Marie Redmond. A group of walkers had become dense enough in one area of the wall to weaken it by their constant pressure. “We’ve all accepted the reality of this situation and whatever happens, happens.”
  18. 18. Mark Weber, 23, reportedly attempted to eat the brains of his fellow classmates in a Reporting II class on the top floor of the building shortly after 10am. A fellow student, who spoke on condition of anonymity, described him as being “distant and out-of-sorts” when she greeted him before class, also describing him as having a very pale, almost sickly complexion and blood-shot eyes. “I didn’t think much of it until he started foaming at the mouth,” said the source. “A few minutes after Professor Radcliffe began class, Mark started acting strange, groaning and smashing his keyboard.”
  19. 19. One studentattempted to restrain Weber, with sources revealing him as Brian Perry, 24, a senior at the university. Perry’s heroic actions provided time for the room to be evacuated without further casualties. In President Obama’s public address following the incident, he vowed to bestow a posthumous Presidential Medal of Freedom upon Brian Perry’s family in recognition of his valiant sacrifice.

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