This is the way the world ends…

“The is the way the world ends, not with a bang, but with a…” – TS Eliot

It was a Tuesday morning when the first brimstone fell. Crashing onto vehicles, and landing on the streets, it made traffic quite a hassle. Many drivers simply crashed headfirst into the cataclysmic debris or confusedly stopped and honked for minutes on end. Despite all the honking, the brimstone didn’t move, and it didn’t stop. And neither did the apocalypse.

Of course it made the news when the horses began to eat each other. And the blood rain obviously made the weather report. Everybody knew about it, but it seemed that most people simply did not care. Religious groups panicked, and many of the feeble-minded snapped, but they were in the minority. People had jobs to go to, and families to feed. It wasn’t the first time horrible events were broadcast on the news.

Sure it was bad when the first plague began. And when it swept the world, killing millions, there was a charity concert to help raise money for a cure. Some people donated, but most chose not to. The United States managed to avoid the worst of the plague’s casualties, but its citizens still felt bad about it. Thoughts and prayers were sent, Facebook profile pictures were changed, but hardly anyone lost sleep over it.

It was far from ideal when the swarms of locusts arrived. Food was scarce for a while, but eventually pesticides were developed to deal with the problem. The fruits and vegetables grew once more, you just had to wash them first. The dead locusts made excellent fertilizer when they were processed and ground down.

A child was born on July 6th, at 6:00 PM with goat horns and a birthmark the shape of an upside down cross. In just a few days he grew into an adult, and became a sensation on American Idol for his appearance and angelic voice. One night he gave a famous speech in which he promised to lead America through the apocalypse and announced his candidacy for president. Some people voted for him, but most didn’t.

When the four horsemen arrived, they all got interviews on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News. They spread messages of humanity’s guilt and inevitable punishment. These were broadcast in diners, bars, restaurants, and businesses across the country. People watched, just as they watched all the rest of the news, but little changed.

People still worked 40 hour work weeks, went to school, bought groceries, and continued their lives. It got a little bit harder when the portals to hell split open and hot magma leaked through cracks in the Earth. Nevertheless, people had their own personal dramas to deal with and were largely unfazed.

It was a Tuesday morning when the world ended. There was no defining moment of realization or mass panic. No overreaction or upheaval. There were no widespread riots, and few even quit their jobs.

Rather, when the deafening fires of the apocalypse spread throughout the world it was found that the way the world ended was not with a bang, but with an indifferent sigh.

(This story was recently written by my sixteen-year-old son, Daniel, for his creative writing class. I’ll tell you this, I sure couldn’t write that well at his age!)



Is the ultimate reality show actually possible?

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]Now we’re into one of my favorite parts of Watching the End of the World, where we get to see how it all happens. When the idea for this book first came up, what intrigued me the most was:

Could this really be done? With enough financial backing, would it be possible to stage the ultimate reality show?

Over the next couple years, while the idea stewed in my brain, I had dozens of conversations with family and friends about this. What would stop the government from shutting the show down? How would the show be delivered all over the world? And on, and on.

The upshot is that I really think something like this could be pulled off. (At least until WEW goes big and becomes a major movie, at which point the idea will be blown!) The money is the trickiest part, but I think there’s people out there who could manage it.

I think it could be done and I think it would just make massive amounts of money. Who wouldn’t watch it? I sure as heck would. (Yes, I’d feel appropriately bad about doing so, but I wouldn’t really be able to help myself.)

What do you think? Could this be done? What did I miss?

Enjoying the book? You can get it now on my site  (and name your own price) or on Amazon (paperback or digital). Don’t you love choices?

Go to Chapter One.

Eric Knight

See what (made-up) people are saying about Watching the End of the World!

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000040_00014]“This book is the greatest thing since sliced bread! Literally. I will now never eat sliced bread again.” – Tom Fool

Watching the End of the World saved my cat’s life! Really, Fluffy was lying on the couch bored nearly to death and I read it to her and now she’s all better!” – Totally Not-Crazy Cat Lady

“If my plane crashed in the Andes and I was the only survivor I’d want to have Watching the End of the World with me. I could use it to fight off bears.” – Grizzly Steve

“Because of this book I now think I will survive the winter. The pages burn really well in my fireplace.” – Steven “Brrr” Wildman

“And it came to pass that on the nine-millionth day I did read Watching the End of the World and yea, it was good.” – God (Author’s note: I’m especially proud of this one. God’s very busy and doesn’t have much time to read.)

Continue reading “See what (made-up) people are saying about Watching the End of the World!”

Well, here’s another nice review!

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Just had a new review come out today and I’m happy to say it’s another good one! Yay! Here’s a couple of excerpts:

“The story is well-written and it is a page turner throughout, not once slowing down. From start to finish the reader will be captivated … My adrenaline did not slow down until I read the last word … Eric Knight has written a novel that if it ever were to become a reality I would be terrified and yet enthralled. The ideas he presents in this read speaks to the very nature of society, as it is today.” 

It feels like my action thriller, Watching the End of the World, is starting to get some real traction.

Now, I may be biased, but I think you ought to take a look at it. After all, with my name your own price policy, what do you have to lose?

Watching the End of the World – Chapter 20

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In the morning they finally found a news broadcast in English. The announcer had a strong South African accent and there was a noticeable tremor in his voice. Akila had gathered everyone in the common room, telling them they needed to have a meeting, but before the meeting could start, Jordynn had turned the TV on.

“The prime minister has put the country under martial law. Curfew is at sunset. Anyone found on the streets after that will be shot. I repeat: anyone found on the streets after sunset will be shot. Citizens are to stay in their homes unless it is absolutely necessary. All public gatherings are forbidden and will be dealt with by lethal force. This order is to remain in effect indefinitely.” He paused and gathered himself for what he had to say next. His skin looked gray.

This is good, isn’t it? Did you know you can buy this book and pay whatever price you want? (Even a thousand bucks! You know, if you want to.)

Continue reading “Watching the End of the World – Chapter 20”

Watching the End of the World – Chapter 19

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Nate climbed out onto the roof and realized he’d forgotten to bring his rifle. It was still down in the warehouse, leaning against a crate.

“It’s about time,” Tony said. “I thought you weren’t going to show.”

“Yeah…I got delayed.”

“Some new drama come up?”

Nate considered this. “You could say that.”

“Well, don’t tell me. I don’t want to know. I just want to go down and crawl into bed and pass out for about forty hours.” He started for the trap door.

“Can I borrow your rifle?”

Want the whole book? You can even name your own price! Continue reading “Watching the End of the World – Chapter 19”

Watching the End of the World – Chapter 18

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It was dark the next time Nate turned the TV on. He needed something to do. He felt like he would go crazy if he didn’t have something to occupy his mind. Tony was on the roof on watch. He hadn’t seen Jenna or Maha in hours. Santiago and Caleb were sitting at the dining table, drinking steadily, without talking, no expressions on their faces, like men intent on a very serious activity that required full concentration. Jordynn was still in bed. Tamara wandered in and out, drinking steadily as well.

Nate quickly flipped past the news channels, averting his eyes as he did so, and went to the HBO channel. Rambo was on, dubbed into some language he didn’t recognize. But the actor who was voicing Sylvester Stallone sounded completely wrong and the whole movie looked completely fake, though at one time he remembered loving it. On the screen, Rambo ran through the woods and shot a man and Nate flinched, the image striking too close to home. He was about to turn off the TV when the channel suddenly went dead. Kelly, who was sitting on the love seat watching said, “What happened to the channel? Did you turn the receiver off?” There was a bruise on her face from where Adam had hit her. Adam hadn’t been seen since.

“No,” Nate said. “Look, the green light is still on.”

Dying to get the whole book?

Continue reading “Watching the End of the World – Chapter 18”