No war. No demons. No zombies. Just a father and his two-year-old daughter trying to survive.
What began as conceptual tinder when taking my daughter for a “wagon ride” around the neighborhood quickly caught fire. An idea, a spark of inspiration in one bizarre moment became a first draft novel over the following eight months.
The day, a quiet Sunday afternoon in which it was cool enough no homes were using air conditioning. There were no cars passing by, not even the whoosh of vehicles on the highway. The air was silent but for the song of nature and the plastic wheels of the wagon. The sun was warm on my skin, my little Lady Bug played with her doll and rode behind me, talking to herself.
She asked me questions. I gave her answers. I felt a sense of contentment that is not often found, and then, was struck by a dis-associative sense of otherworldlyness (is this a word? I don’t care). The “what-if” began to assault my waking mind. For days I couldn’t get the picture out of my head, of the lone father at the end of the world dragging his daughter through ruin. I wrote it all down and then forgot about it for a while. I let my sub-conscience do the work. I let my daughter grow up a little.
I treasured every moment that came, then sank into the story.
“The Two That Remained” is not your usual post-apocalyptic tale. There was no war, no zombies, no monsters crawling up from the depths of Hell. One day everyone is alive, and the next they aren’t. All that’s left, is a father who is not satisfied with his life direction and marriage (quitting his happy carrier to be a stay at home dad, wife becoming the bread-winner), and his two-year-old daughter who can’t comprehend what all has changed. This puts a massive burden of emotional weight on his shoulders as they attempt to survive in what’s left of St. Louis, Missouri, while unraveling the mystery of his wife’s involvement in the extinction event.
I wanted to tell a modern fatherhood and marriage story, of the struggles we face and the changing gender roles in the workplace. A story that, though it stands at the end of all we know, there is hope for a future. A story that, even in the worst of times, joy can be found, odds overcome, and moments treasured.
And as events unfold, the question is asked again and again. Are they the only two that remain?
Below are a series of excerpts I’ve narrated to wet your appetite for this project. Take a peek. Share with friends. If it speaks to you, please support! Those who contribute will get an advance eBook copy of the book after the editor is done with it and possibly more! But I need your help.