A Question of inspiration, here at “the end of all things”

A bit of an ominous title, yes? Do not worry. I have not returned from a year and a half away from this website to say “thanks but no thanks.” To those of you that have navigated here over the last year plus looking for the inevitable HEAVEN AND ENDWORLD update don’t worry: It is coming. The above-referenced “end of all things” is, of course, the end of The ENDWORLD Series: The trilogy that took me almost 30 years and multiple revisions to complete. In the immortal words of Doctor Stephen Strange, we ARE in the endgame now. There is not much left for me to do save for finish cleaning and formatting the book, submit it for a final edit, send my cover concept to my artist to complete and thereafter? Publication.

To my always wonderful Beta readers? Thank you. Your feedback has as before and always been integral to my process. To those of you that have read Books One and Two and are waiting patiently for Book Three? Thank you, as well. It seems that for the most part, people have enjoyed William MacNuff’s story. I could do, and have seen others do way worse than 13 positive 4-5 star reviews on Amazon and two bad ones. And to those two folks that pinged me for 1 star? Thank you. It is humbling to know that The ENDWORLD Series does not resound with everyone. Mayhap if I do go on writing after this–and I certainly hope that I do–the next thing or things I write and put out for public consumption will be more to your liking.

I mused on my blog this past weekend that I had a revelation about the inspiration behind these books. If you’d like to read the whole post you can link it HERE, but to sum up? Book One was inspired by my childhood and early adulthood, the friends I found there and the love I discovered, and eventually lost. Book Two was inspired by my marriage, subsequent fatherhood and dissolution of the former a few years ago. Book Three though? It is informed by my past but not inspired by it. It is inspired by my future. The inevitable question of “where do I go from here?” With this new revelation in mind, I look forward to jumping into what remains of my final clean/format and giving you, at long last, the end of William’s story.

Is it the last ENDWORLD story? I honestly do not know. Only time will tell if there is more of that world, remaining to be written but that which I set out to do so many many years before this will be concluded with the words “The End.” No more “To Be Continued” or “To Be Concluded.” HEAVEN is William MacNuff’s last dance, and you will once more get to read it from his point of view.

There is something that I have been meaning to do, and it seems to me a necessary step to take before wrapping up this artistic odyssey that I have been on for a good portion of my life. These words speak to those of you reading this, or hearing about this that haven’t been a part of my life for a long time. Hopefully, you know who you are. Without revealing names and making anyone feel uncomfortable I want you to know that even now, “at the end of all things” I think about you. What you inspired. How you encouraged me to tell this story. What you were to me for so long and in many cases what I was to you. I pray that you have all found happiness and contentment. However things ended and whatever our final words, spoken to each other were–whether they were accompanied by a hug, anger or silence–know now and always that none of this would have been possible without you. This story? What started as a Wonder Years/Terminator mash-up with a bit of Huck Finn thrown in was as much created by you and your presence in my life as it was the archetypes that I modeled the characters, both machine AND human upon. Late night phone conversations. Embraces that I never wanted to end. An “I love you” spoken with the most plutonic of intentions that in one or two cases grew into more. Moments shared by sun and moonlight. Songs sang and one or two danced to. Those moments will live within my heart, soul and mind for the remainder of my life. Every time William said, and will say “je’taime” in the pages that remain he wasn’t simply speaking to one person. He was thinking of ALL of you. Hence my final dedication, revealed here for the first time in The ENDWORLD Series:

For you. Gone, but never forgotten.

Je’taime.

No lie: I labored over it a bit. Actually a LOT. But in the end? It seemed a fitting coda given where this story came from and the things that inspired it. A fitting way to acknowledge the myriad of people that made this possible and continue to do so. Our group of adventurers may not be as big as it was, once upon a time…

…because all good stories, and even some of the bad ones begin as such…

…but mayhap there will come a day when I do get to see some of you again. I hope you are well. I hope you are happy. I hope you feel the same peace within you that I feel, writing these words right now as I prepare to jump in and complete my own, literary journey. Here, at the end of all things related to The ENDWORLD Series.

I remain, and always will remain yours, as you remain mine.

Je’taime.

Frank.

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