Jim Cobb has been around the prepper and survival circles for years. He is the author of several prepping books and is the editor of Survival Weekly.
His books include: Prepper’s Home Defense, The Prepper’s Complete Book of Disaster Readiness, Prepper’s Long-Term Survival Guide, Countdown to Preparedness, Urban Emergency Survival Plan, Prepper’s Financial Guide, Prepper’s Survival Hacks, and more. He is also a founding member of Survival Weekly.
Q: Jim, what is the one modern convenience you’d miss the most if society collapsed?
A: Clean running water on demand, followed by the Internet.
Q: What personal attributes will be most important after a societal collapse?
A: Being able to keep a cool head and use your head for more than just a hat rack.
Q: If the world as we know it came to an apocalyptic end, what would the most likely cause be?
A: Honestly, probably mankind’s stupidity and arrogance.
Q: What are you most pessimistic about for our future? What are you most optimistic about?
A: Pessimistic – the ever-increasing vitriol and just outright meanness exhibited by people online. There was a time when people could agree to disagree on some topics but still remain polite, cordial, even friendly. These days, not so much.
Optimistic – I know the younger generations often get drug through the mud, so to speak, but having kids myself and talking to them and their friends, many of these young people are not just intelligent and well spoken but have tremendous insights and some really great perspectives. Not all of them, of course, but enough to make me hopeful for the future.
Q: What do you think is the most overlooked items preppers most don’t have?
A: A realistic perspective.
Q: What is your favorite post-apocalyptic movie?
A: Oh man, there’s no way I could narrow it down to just one. Here’s a short list:
Tomorrow, When the War Began
Red Dawn (both versions)
Resident Evil: Apocalypse
The Road Warrior
Q: What is your favorite post-apocalyptic book?
A: Same with movies, it is impossible for me to just pick one. I’ve always been a big fan of the “men’s adventure” post-nuke books that were really popular in the 80s and early 90s, such as Ahern’s Survivalist series, The Last Ranger by Craig Sargent, and Warlord by Jason Frost. Some of my more recent favorites include:
- Pandemic by Yvonne Ventresca
- Ashfall series by Mike Mullin
- Rule of Three series by Eric Walters
- White Fire by Brian Keene
Q: What are your prepping pet peeves?
A: When people concentrate so much on the defensive angle (firearms, other weapons, booby traps, etc.) that they lose sight of the basics like food, water, and shelter.
Q: Have you ever been in a situation when you had to utilize your preps or prepper know-how? If so, what was it?
A: Well, we got walloped with about 8 inches of snow last night, on top of the 5-6 inches that was already on the ground. Tomorrow and the day after, we’re looking at a deep freeze, down to -40°F with the wind chill. We aren’t worried about any problems as we are fully stocked with food, snacks, firewood, and other necessities.
Q: Why do you think the apocalypse is so popular right now in books, movies, television, etc.?
A: I think there’s a lot of uncertainty in the world right now, due to politics and other factors. Post-apocalyptic fiction allows people a safe way to explore how they might handle the disasters and other events that worry them in real life.
Q: What is the most over-the-top/impractical prepper purchase you’ve made?
A: I own more knives and other bladed implements than any human being would ever truly need.
Q: Do you have any parting advice or wisdom you’d like to share with others?
A: Start now. You can’t do it all at once but you can do one thing every day to get you further down the path.