So the World Didn’t End. Are You Disappointed?

What’s news for horror writer Paul D. Dail?

Just plugging along.  The time away from the blog and focusing on my WIP has been productive, both in word count and enthusiasm level.  Plus, with my hectic schedule, writing really has been catch-as-catch-can, which I figure is good practice for doing it professionally.  Never knowing for sure when I’m going to get a good writing session in, I’ve had to eliminate the ritual aspect of the craft in favor of just getting down to it whenever a moment presents itself (either getting up at 4:30 in the morning, or on those rare moments when both of my children take a nap at the same time).

Unfortunately, when he looks like this, I feel like this.

Unfortunately, when he looks like this, I feel like this.

Otherwise, I had a fun interview I did for Tara Maya’s blog.  She was one of the other authors (besides myself) in Undead: Ten Tales of Zombies.  If you get a chance and want to learn more about me, check it out by clicking here.

What does the future hold?

I’m debating axing this regular section of my blog for two reasons.  One, with everything going on in my outside-of-writing life right now, I can’t guarantee the regularity with which I’ve posted in the past.  Two, do any of you really count on this section of my blog and mark your calendars based on it?  Feel free to comment with your opinion.

But without further ado…

I was contacted a couple of weeks ago by a woman named Allison Morris.  She had come across my post, End of the World Stories We Love to Hate, and sent me a graphic she helped create on a timeline of failed apocalypse predictions (well, one still remains to be seen). 

I thought this was pretty interesting, but what really sparked my attention was the text that introduced the graphic.  I’ll get to that shortly, but first, here’s the graphic from OnlinePsychologyDegree.net

121209ApocalypseFINAL

Now what was interesting was the line in the text that mentioned the fact that some people actually seemed disappointed when these predictions didn’t come true.  That struck me, because I think this is true of many of us… depending on the form of the apocalypse.

For example, I remember back in December of 1999 when I was living in Montana, there was certainly a part of me that kind of wished everything technological would come to an end.  I even had friends who were hunting guides/outfitters who said if everything went to Hell to come stay with them.  They were stocked.

Sure this would put a kink in my plans of getting professionally published, but if nothing else, I figured I could be a roaming bard of the new Wild West, toting my Underwood typewriter to document the times (and beat down bears if necessary).

Plus, I’d be out of debt.  This, I think, is largely the allure of Fight Club.

The zombie apocalypse is another story.  As I mentioned in my interview for Tara Maya:

“People want to believe that in a zombie apocalypse, they would be able to survive. [ergo, the appeal of zombie stories]”

zombie apocalypse

Various other stories have also had their appeal.  I have to admit that I love most disaster movies.  Cheesy as it was, I even liked “The Day After Tomorrow.”  But again, there’s that element of survival.  The world has changed.  On one hand, I think many of us believe the world is due for (and would benefit immensely from) a serious change.  And of course, we want to think that we would still be around to see it (and consequently, help usher in the new world).

The 2012 apocalypse was a different story, especially if you saw that stupid movie (which I actually talked about in Part II of my End of the World Stories We Hate to Love.  Basically, I just hated it).  That was supposed to be the Big One.  The movie didn’t really have any significant amount of worthwhile people surviving.  Just rich people.  It was really difficult for me to look at my two-year-old daughter and four-month-old son and think that they wouldn’t be around after December 21st.

So was I disappointed when Y2K didn’t happen?  Sure, maybe a little.  But this last go ‘round?  Not so much.  As far as I’m concerned, it’s all a free ride now.  Kind of like when I survived skydiving.  Once you’ve survived impending potential death, you shouldn’t take anything for granted.

What do I want from you?

What are your thoughts?  Have you ever thought it might be nice to see a major cataclysmic global change?  Did you want to see Y2K happen?  Have you read Fight Club or seen the movie?  Do you think Brad Pitt is hot?

Don’t forget to check out my interview with Tara Maya.

Oh, and if you’ve followed this blog for any amount of time, do you think I’m okay to axe the “What does the future hold?” segment?

Speaking of following the blog, please subscribe to this blog to receive posts via email or RSS feed (on the right hand column).  NO SPAM, I promise.

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8 responses to “So the World Didn’t End. Are You Disappointed?

  1. Yes! I thought I was the only one who was mildly put out when Y2K didn’t in fact mark the end of the technological age. I too had visions of myself living a happy, uncomplicated, Bardic life in the wilderness.

    In reality, I would probably have been one of the first to die.

    I think you’re right that the appeal of end-of-the-world scenarios lies in part in our tendency to imagine that we will survive, while those who are less brave/farsighted/intelligent than us will perish. It feeds our vanity and desire to be proved right. Also, I think we like to imagine that the end of the world will mark, in particular, the end of those things we especially dislike about the world, so that, come what may, we will at least have a precious ‘I told you so’ moment.

    As for the ‘What does the future hold’ segment, maybe you could just include it as and when there is something particularly interesting to report. If I had a similar segment, it would probably just be followed by a question mark, or by a load of blithering about nothing in particular. But then I do have an extraordinarily uneventful life… :-)

    The photograph of the baby is adorable, by the way!

    • “In reality, I would probably have been one of the first to die” :) Pretty funny.

      Hey Mari, great to hear from you. I would agree that there is definitely a “I told you so” moment in there somewhere. Hadn’t thought of it that way before.

      And good advice on the “What does the future hold?” Only if something big is coming up maybe.

      Thanks again for stopping by (and for your kind comments on the boy). Hope you have a good weekend.

  2. Here’s something I found interesting about the ‘end of the world’ phenomena. There are always armageddon cults in existence and each one has a different date and reason for the expiration of life as we know it. Several decades ago, a pair of prominent sociologists infiltrated one of these cults. By becoming members, they could study the types of people that gravitate towards a doomsday cult and se the effects when the predicted end time doesn’t happen.

    What shocked them was that the belief of these people DEEPENED after the day came and went with nothing happening. They had assumed members would become disillusioned and drift away. They in fact became more adamant and just adjusted the date.

    Personally, I’m glad the world didn’t end because I’m real excited about the new season of Justified and want to see my next book in print in April. Call me selfish. :)

    • Hey Hunter, that is pretty fascinating stuff, although if I really thought about it, not very surprising. I guess if you invest your whole life (or death, for that matter) in an end-date, there’s really not much else to do if it doesn’t come about except readjust to a new date.

      And I’m with you as far as being glad the world didn’t end. Although I haven’t seen Justified, I’m also looking forward to your book in April. Not selfish at all, my friend.

      Thanks for your comments.

  3. Yeah, I was a little disappointed when Y2K proved to be nothing. Though I lived in the suburbs then and would have been hard pressed to survive. Now I have a really big garden. Mostly because I like fresh veggies, but when our government sinks us so far in debt that they collapse our economy, I’ll have broccoli.

    Beautiful baby pic!

    • Hey Michelle. I love broccoli (even though I can rarely spell it correctly :)). I’ll be sure to at least visit when we’re set back to agrarian times.

      Thanks for the nice comments on my boy. He is a cutie, if I do say so myself.

      Hope all is going well for you. Thanks for your comments.

  4. I’m with Mari on the “What the future holds” segment. Only when you need it.

    I’d be one of the first to go in a zombie apocalypse. I have limited weaponry (softball bat, kitchen knives, garden tools). A zombie would have to hold still for me to lop its head off. Zombies may be slow moving, but they aren’t stationary.

    Even if one did hold still for me, it’d probably leak zombie goo on me, which would get into a festering hangnail or something and I’d end up undead, anyway.

    Besides, why would you *want* to survive a zombie apocalypse? Much too stressful. Zombies have an easier time. Until someone shoots them in the head, that is.

    Here’s a somewhat related question: Why don’t zombies eat each other? They’re much easier to catch than live-brained people.

    And yes, Brad Pitt is hot. (You thought I wasn’t paying attention, didn’t you.)

    • Ah Marie. You’re funny. I’d be cheering for you as the heroine of a zombie apocalypse story. Depending on exactly what you have, I feel like you might have something with those gardening tools.

      And yes, if there is anything Walking Dead is teaching us (keeping in mind that I’m only on Season 2), doesn’t seem much sense in wanting to survive the zombie apocalypse.

      And hey, I wouldn’t ask a question I’m afraid to answer myself. Brad Pitt? Yeah, he’s a fine looking man :)

      Thanks for your comments. Sorry I’ve so absent with TESSpecFic. Hoping to get back in the swing of things soon.

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