Frank Herbert was an American Science Fiction writer who died in 1986 and he famously said ‘There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.’
But that place can be frustrating. You know that feeling of finishing a really good story? You’ve been living in this other world for so long that when you emerge it feels strange to be amongst real things. Sometimes it feels like a loss, there are no more pages to turn, no more episodes to watch, no more podcasts in your feed.
This week, All the Best explores what happens in the end. The end of a life, the end of a book, the end of something that’s taken you a long time.
The End at Seven Years of Age
All of us ask the question of what happens ‘In the end’ at some point. For some it happens earlier than others, and our reactions vary, depending on the answers we get, or how easily we can distract ourselves from the question. For one girl, the void on the other side loomed large and early, and sparked a premature existential crisis.
Written by Caitlin Doyle-Markwick
If I Could
If I could bring back that man you loved with words, I would do that here. If I could curl his easy smile across the page, I would do that here. If I could spread his eyes in pencil lines, and not in photos, I would do that here. But since I can’t, and since they’re gone, I do this here.
Written and Produced by Zacha Rosen
Music credits: ‘How Do You Slow This Thing Down’ by The Gothic Archies, ‘6/8 War ‘ by Leftfield, ‘Doll’s Polyphony’ by Geinoh Yamashirogumi, ‘The Society of the Crossed Keys’ by Alexandre Desplat, ‘The Lutz Police Militia’ by Alexandre Desplat, ‘Check Point 19 Criminal Internment Camp’ by Alexandre Desplat
That feeling that you get at the end of a really good book? The mix of satisfaction and devestation that it’s all over? Jess wondered if authors get something similar. What’s it like when you finish writing a book, and emerge into the real world?
Thanks to the authors who spoke to us for this story.
A.S. Patric is the author of short story collections Las Vegas for Vegans and The Rattler and Other Stories and a novella, Bruno Kramzer. For this story we spoke about his first novel, Black Rock White City, which will be published in April 2015 by Transit Lounge.
Produced by Jess O’Callaghan
Music credits: Johnny Ripper
Presenters: Michael Brydon and Michaela Morgan
Community Coordinator: Pip Rasmussen
Executive Producer: Giordana Caputo
Features Executive Producers: Heidi Pett & Jess O’Callaghan
Image Credit: azrasta