Magic and Mayhem… without the magic and mayhem?
While thinking about the type of book I wanted to write, I knew it had to be something that took place in a world full of imagination and possibility—the type of story I enjoy reading myself—but I also wanted it to be realistic, something I could envision actually happening. I wanted to write about the end of the world, but I didn’t want to create your typical apocalyptic book, which always seem to be filled with marauding gangs, children with special powers, and so on. Instead, I wanted to focus on simple things such as looking back on life and regretting how time was spent, about the importance of family, and about the everyday things we take for granted. In short, I wanted to write about the magic and mayhem of the apocalypse, only without any magic or mayhem!
To do this, I focused not on the fantastic and supernatural elements of mankind’s impending extinction, but of the human elements—people growing older each year, the human population slowly fading away. Instead of zombies terrorizing everyone or battles for the few remaining resources, my story has people reminiscing about the final movie they watched, the final vacation they took.
In my book, there is no hope for a better tomorrow, but there is still the marvel of realizing which few things in life are truly important. And although there are no warlords or flesh-eating zombies, there is still the quite human havoc of rats and spiders taking over basements, of water dripping through ceilings, of people feeling overwhelmed with day-to-day life.
When you read The Man Who Watched The World End you won’t be given a gift-wrapped happy ending in which the teenage hero has rallied against some grand villain. You won’t have the immediate satisfaction of an invasion being prevented. After all, my book is science fiction without the magic. It’s the apocalypse without the mayhem. But in place of a feel-good story or a climactic battle, my hope is that you’ll find a story about real people and real concerns, and because of that, the story will remain with you long after you’ve read it.