Thursday, March 3, 2011

The End Times (or, The Beginning)

I suppose I've been both terrified by and fascinated with the idea of an apocalypse for as long as I can remember. I grew up in your typical Southern Baptist church, and there was always talk of The Rapture or the Second Coming or The Return (but I'm still not exactly sure if they all mean the same thing). One thing was always clear though: it was a terrible thing, but it warranted a lot of sermons. Oh, and one other thing: it wouldn't come until there was peace in the Middle East. No one knew the day or the hour, but they were pretty sure about this part. So as long as Israel and Palestine were going at it, I felt pretty safe. Sucks for Israel and Palestine! (To this day, I still get a twinge every time someone mentions Middle East Peace Talks, but by now, I know that it truly would take a divine intervention to get that ball rolling.)

I mean, Southern Baptist culture is steeped in the idea of the End Times, a time when all the good, Good-Book-Abiding Southern Baptists would be rewarded for their long suffering (I'm still not sure if the other brands of Protestants are going to make it) and all the evil-doers and unrepentant liberals would be punished, a divine I-told-you-so. I remember standing in my grandmother's home looking out the window at a storm punishing the landscape outside; she patted my hand and told me that "with all this weird weather, I think the end times are near, sweetheart." I was about eleven or twelve.

Then there was the time that my youth group went to Christian alternative to the Halloween haunted house--Stockbridge, Georgia's Tribulation Trail ( NINETY MINUTES of post-rapture hell on earth. An hour and a half of in your face, walk-through the end times. Half of our group was crying from fear by the end. At one point they even tell you that you can be safe if you just take the mark of Satan. Those tricksters.

By the time I'm old enough to actually see how screwed up the world actually is, I have all this end-of-the-world baggage. Of course, then I get to college and find out that not all denominations take Revelation as seriously as the Baptists. In fact, according to wikipedia, there are at least eight religious interpretations. When you add in the non-religious ones, well, you get my point.

A few years ago I decided to stop wandering in the literary desert, roaming mindlessly from book to book, never thinking about what I was choosing or why. So I started to put more thought into picking out what I was going to read (I mean, before, I just read whatever I found laying around my mom's house). It was through this approach that I discovered the genre of post-apocalyptic fiction. Since then, I've explored the nooks and crannies and have dedicated myself to watching, reading, or listening to anything I can find.

That brings us to now. I decided to start this blog to cover all things apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic. And since the edges of this genre touch others, expect to see things related to dystopias, zombies, survivalist fiction, and non-apocalyptic disaster stuff. Or anything else I want, since it is my blog after all.

Welcome to the End of the World!


  1. Hey, I found your blog via your posting on GoodReads. I run a few different post-apocalyptic sites myself and it's always good to someone else who's helping to spread the genre.

    I'd also like to invite you to join our community on The Post-Apocalyptic Forum ( I think you'd fit right in.

  2. welcome! and thanks!

    the forum looks awesome and I can't wait to join and dig in. Let me know if you have any other site recommendations.

    thanks again!

  3. Fun stuff. My dad was raised as a Southern Baptist in Tennesee in the 1950's. He decided to go his own way before he even graduated from high school in 1962. Mom was raised in a strict Irish Catholic family. No wonder I'm drawn to apocalyptic topics.

  4. marccord, welcome. Yes, there's a poem that comes to mind, by Philip Larkin, called This Be the Verse. Google it. It's so true. Bless them.