Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Rish Performs "The Last Man" on Audible.com

When I first moved to Los Angeles, one of my jobs was with the F/X Network, a cable channel located on the 20th Century Fox lot.  I worked in the F/X vault, which was an underground, cooled room with thousands of oversized videotapes.  Each day, I'd be given the programming schedule for the next day, and have to find all the tapes and put them in order, on a trolley, and then they'd be put it cartons and taken (via golf cart) to the broadcast center.  Each day, I'd be responsible for returning the previous day's tapes, and even though it was an easy job, the hours I spent in that vault, alone, were really monotonous.  To pass the time, every day for a couple of weeks, I imagined that some kind of huge bomb went off outside while I was down there, and it had somehow sheltered me.  When I emerged, I found that L.A. was in ruins, and it appeared I was alone.  After exploration, I discovered there were only a handful of people left who had survived (due to happenstance like mine).  Among them were my old boss at the production company that made my life hell (she was the villain of the piece), homeless cannibals, and Katie Holmes.

Yeah, I probably need counseling.

I mention this because I recently narrated a book by Ryan King called "The Last Man," wherein a husband and father, Sam, finds himself the only survivor of a plague that wipes out literally every other human being within hundreds of miles.  The story picks up a couple of years after the holocaust, with Sam traveling along the East Coast with a bunch of friendly dogs.  Sam longs to find a purpose in life now that everyone else is gone, and mostly just drives or walks from town to town, finding (or catching) food, and encountering various obstacles.

The idea of being alone in the world is not a new one, and I knew it was inevitable he would encounter somebody else alive before the book's end (though probably nobody who had appeared on "Dawson's Creek").  It therefore surprised me that it happened almost immediately, within the first dozen pages of the book, and pleased me to no end to discover that the people he ran into were only figments of his imagination.  All too easy to believe, from someone who had adventures exploring abandoned mansions in Beverly Hills, bicycling unmolested to the ocean in Santa Monica, and traveled to the exotic pet store over by the Mormon temple to feed the fish each day, all in my mind.

I previously narrated Ryan's book "No Kinda Life," and if I had a complaint about the two books, it's that I was left wanting more when the stories ended.  That's not not really a criticism so much as a desire to experience more in those two post-apocalyptic worlds.

Here is the link: http://www.audible.com/pd/Sci-Fi-Fantasy/The-Last-Man-Audiobook/B00EV18WJK/ref=sr_1_19?qid=1380324057&sr=1-19.

I got paid to read it, so I get nothing if you buy it, but it might bring us closer together.  And who knows, like me, you may also sit up and say, "Wait, Mary Shelley wrote a post-apocalyptic novel called 'The Last Man' two centuries ago?"

Rish Outfield, The Last Boy

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