Saturday, December 8, 2012

It’s the end of the world as we know it

by Kaye George

If you want to get philosophical, the statement in that title is true every minute, every second. The only constant you can count on is Change. You can work all you want to get everything just like you like it, but you’d better realize it won’t stay that way.

OK for philosophy. Now, for the end of the world! I was asked to write an “end of the world” short story and my first reaction was, “I don’t write those!” But, after three seconds, I realized what a fertile field that could be for--just about anything.

The first thing I had to decide was, how would the world end? I wanted to thing of something that most other people weren’t thinking of. To me, the obvious ends would be nuclear holocaust, death of the planet by pollution or global warming, chemical weapons, meteor strike, super nova--that kind of stuff that you’ve read about. I worked one of my personal phobias into one that I hope is different. I’m scared of all the waves that are passing through me. Waves from everyone’s cell phones, wifis, TVs. Those waves, to get to their targets, have to pass through my body--yours too. What is that doing to us?

The next thing to decide is what would my characters be thinking? After I decide who my characters are.

How would you structure a story like this? Do you have any ideas for the end of the world that you’d like to write?

I love this obsession with the Mayan calendar for giving us this fodder!

And now, my push. If you’re curious about my apocalypse story, check out Expand the description and notice the other authors. It’s a good line-up, beginning with the editor, Katherine Tomlinson!

photo from


Lynn Cahoon said...

Good for you for taking on a subject you don't write.

Mine would be on survivors, because I'm an optimist - and a romantic. Maybe a take on a new adam/eve story. ala Stephen King's The Stand.

Kaye George said...

So you would write post-apocalypse, Lynn? That would be interesting, too. Our assignment was to write the last night of the world, so no one survives in these stories. (I think--I haven't read the rest of them yet! Wish I had a Kindle sometimes, but not most times. :) )

Thanks for coming by!

Morgan Mandel said...

That is a striking picture!
And, a very daunting topic!

I salute you for taking it on, and especially in such a unique way.

Morgan Mandel

B.K. Stevens said...

I like your idea about how the world ends--very original, and almost plausible. (I hope it's only ALMOST plausible!)

Kaye George said...

Morgan, thanks! After I got into it, it was less daunting. My hypochondria/paranoia/whatever comes in handy sometimes.

B.K., I'm not at all sure it's not possible. As long as we keep the band widths tamed, I think we're OK. (Note that I know very little about the subject!)

Randy Rawls said...

Gosh, will that mean no more Killian's? That would be the end of the world as I know it. Guess I'd better pick up another case. :-)

Kaye George said...

According to my scenario, Randy, not even the cockroaches and the kudzu will make it. Well, maybe the cockroaches.