How to Write an Apocalypse Scene



Part One

  1. How does it begin? What warnings are there? 

»A. Who is the first to know? What country or content is targeted first? Is it a massive, all at once thing or does is it progressive? Are there explosions or only diseases, etc?

I. Ways an apocalypse could happen:

1. War- this is a bit cliche, but you can pull it off if you make it believable.
2. Viral Disease
3. Mythology- there are many prophesied dooms for the world if you look back in Ancient Civiliations or create your own.
4. Space stuff- black holes, sun going out, etc. Just make sure to research the science part.
5. How about asteroid or comet impact or mega-volcano explosion
6.Paralell world collapses
7. Robot Uprising
8. Air pollution increased to a toxic level
9. Nature evolves to kill humans

II. May have it be something that spreads very quickly and kills the host, and dies with the host. Maybe a loose germ warfare bug. That way the heavily populated areas could be killed off, leaving the farmlands and more sparsely populated areas. Since the centers of government tend to be in the heavily populated areas, the politicians and lawyers would go too. 

Suggest YOUR Scene Idea


»B. What warnings are there such as prophecies, stories, premonitions, dreams, visions, etc? Global warming? Has the earth changed? Has people changed??

I. A possible EMP wiping out the power grid throughout most of the world could happen if the sun puts out a massive coronal mass ejection, (called The Solar Kill Shot by scientists). This would cause a major disruption in food delivery, water, and transportation. Most modern jobs would cease to exist overnight. No phones, no computers, no cars no power.  
II. How about signs of the deadly virus. Once a person has been infected, symptoms may appear as soon as 10 days or as long as 90 days after exposure. These symptoms typically happen in stages. You decide the stages.

III. Does more than one person notices or predicts the end of times? How do people take it? As a joke? And when it’s begin (at the very beginning) how do they respond to the people who warned them? Do they ask them for help desperately?


Part Two

    1. Where is everyone headed to? Where is the protection?

»A. Has the government ordered people to remain calm or to go in a certain directions? Has the military or National Guard gotten involved asap?

I. Do they have freedom to go as they pleased or are they forced to go in a direction the authorities tell them to? What are they told to leave behind? What are they told to bring? Describe the image of multitudes of people walking toward somewhere. What is it like?  
II. There’s no reason for people to live in tents. There are too many houses available. However, being that people will tend to live in houses adds the dimension that without electricity they tend to use fire to cook and heat with, and so they tend to burn the buildings down. Without a government there is no readily available water supply so a burning house could set off an entire neighborhood before reaching a point where it won’t spread any more.

III.Imagine the military being on every corner. What questions fill the character’s head? Jot them down. What is burdening them and who do they wish they were with if they aren’t with that person? 

Suggest YOUR Scene Idea


»B.How is the protections holding up and is there enough for everyone? Who is sacrificed?

I. Prepare, stock up on canned and nonperishable foods, and make sure my house or wherever I’m staying is secure. And also find weapons and medicine. . 
II.  Keep it realistic. For example, the character is not always going to have food even in the protection. They’re most likely to be really dirty and not clean often. Everyone is going to be agitated. There’s all different people, and they’re going to be stuck with some people they don’t get along with. And, MOST IMPORTANTLY, killing someone effects them. They won’t just walk away and be okay like nothing happened. They will look at their hands like their a murderer… whether they had to or not.


Part Three

    1. What is being released onto the earth? Who or what seems to be the culprit?

»A. Famine? Creatures? Insects that causes death? Radiation? Meteors? Aliens? What unnatural incidents are taking place?

I. Are these things unstoppable or can they find away how to stop the madness? At least decrease the magnitude? Who is working behind the scenes to help save humanity? Are are these dangerous changing how the world is turning or the people move?
Example: A meteor crashing into a desert where people were supposed to walk in order to get to a safe haven, has caused so much damage the ground is cracking. Now they must take another route in hopes a meteor won’t destroy it. Furthermore, this new route will take ages potentially making people die of starvation or dehydration.

II. When people understand who (if it is a being) is doing this, they would be willing to do anything to get back to the way life was. Even work together. With that said, do they do rain dances, pray, sing, sacrifice animals to please the deity? Do they give gold, silver, all their belongings if it’s a ruler or person with either earthly power or unnatural power? Would they become slaves for Aliens? How about lab rats? If it means earth and civilization would be restore.  
III. Can they fight back against the culprit? Do they have the means? How risky is it? What is more important: saving the earth or saving lives?  

Suggest YOUR Scene Idea


»B. The people need someone to blame, so who is it? Who’s in charge? Is it a deity, a government, a group of people? What type of power do they hold over the world and how do they plan to unleash it? Is it at full force? Or has the worse yet to come?

I. What does the deity or person/culprit threaten to do next? Can nothing satisfy them? Are the people unwilling to give in to demands? How much worse can the destruction get?
II. Where dos the people’s hope lie in? Are they trying to take their own lives to avoid seeing what may come? Who is giving directions? WHo is chosen to speak to the culprit? How will this be settled, if at all?


Part Four

    1. Take a moment to describe the chaos.

»A. What does the character see happening around them (hometown or city) initially and what is predicted to happen next??

I. Bodies, belongings, and whatnot lying around on the ground. Scattered in random places. People fighting over food and shelter while the deity laughs. Mayhem everywhere you look. No one is procreating. Sickness? People preaching to what’s left of the masses. People losing their minds, going nuts, seeing things that aren’t even there.

II. Insert some internal dialogue, screaming, moaning, conversations, panicking, hurling what’s left in their stomach, delusion….  

»B. What is happening around the world and how do they plan on surviving it?

I. How do they know what is going on? Can they watch a news station still? Is gossip being spread? Can everyone somehow see things in there mind? Can they learn from others mistakes and survive just a bit longer. What do they leave behind? What morals do they plan on holding onto?


Part Five

    1. Who can and will survive? When does it end?

»A. Who is promised another day and who isn’t? How long must they endure this Apocalypse? Will they come out unscathed?

I. Will only people who believe in the deity be safe? Only those who served the person in power promised to enter the new world? Who are these people and did they lose anything in the process? Are they harmed at all? Can they bring family with them? 

II. Does the destruction have an end? How much longer and what will they be doing in the meantime? Can they “save” other people too before it’s too late?
III. What is left of the world so far? Is there anything that can be saved or rebuilt? Was it all worth it or all a waste to the culprit (if it has a mind)?



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