From the emergency department to novelist, Sans Souci author Alister Hodge has taken a turn towards the more serene hobby of writing while working his day job at Sutherland Hospital.
Alister is an emergency nurse practitioner and a clinical lecturer at the University of Sydney.
He has written several journals and textbooks, and is the co-creator of a smartphone app that supports triage nurse development in Australia.
He describes his first book, Plague War Outbreak, set in Sydney and on the NSW south coast, as a mental break from providing health care in a busy hospital scene – leaving behind the everyday traumas of the real work and transferring them into a post-apocalyptic landscape.
The novel is the first of a trilogy.
It tells the story of a doctor, Harry, who fails to resuscitate a young woman suffering from an infected bite wound. While her body awaits transfer to the morgue, Harry is stunned to witness the corpse lurch off the bed and attack his staff.
Hell breaks loose, and characters are forced to confront their fears to overcome huge odds as a plague burns across the country in a tide of bloody violence. As horror descends on Sydney, characters take shelter.
“Apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic stories have captured the attention of audiences,” Alister said.
“From Mad Max, to 28 Days Later, through to the Hunger Games and The Walking Dead.
“They’re simple stories with which many can identify. The appeal of apocalyptic stories may be that in our current age, they now seem entirely possible. Global safety is deteriorating as the middle-east slides into ever greater conflict, while relations between powerful nations are strained over trade, and threats of nuclear war are bandied between certain leaders with school yard bluster.
“And that’s just on the human front. Threats from nature also hover at the door. Seas are rising, polar ice-caps melting and the severity and frequency of storm events grow by the year as our planet warms.”
The book is available on Amazon.