Claire Voyant at the End of the World is another piece I wrote for my college literary magazine. It concerns some of the same characters from You Can’t Go Home Again and that’s because it’s actually an earlier version of a story that I scrapped because I didn’t feel like I was ready to write it. Good thing too, because I was able to salvage Amanda and Alice (remember Alice? It’s a book about Alice…) and put them into that one with a significant tweak in their relationship.
You might recall a few weeks ago I posted Levi Aikman and the Redfish which is in the current version of You Can’t Go Home Again. It is a low-tech sci-fi piece that deals with a future in America that isn’t so pleasant: an administration deals in terror tactics to coerce compliance from the populace, an overbearing UN, and the obvious shortcomings in the governmental regulation of things like resources and private property. Basically it is Alex Jones’ nightmare, and you’re going to want to buy a few rolls of tin foil after reading it.
I was pretty surprised that this story was accepted by my school, as most colleges and universities lean in the opposite direction politically. I was really expecting a “Thanks, but no thanks.” They did surprise me, much to my delight.
That said, this piece is still really good and I’m very proud of it. I love to write about strong women because I find them more compelling, especially when they have a checkered past like the one that Amanda seems to have in this version. It’s dark and scary, particularly when Alice starts opening up about herself. It still gives me chills to read it myself.