Fading Away


An excerpt from George R.R. Martin’s The Second Kind of Loneliness

“And then there is the second kind of loneliness.

You don’t need the Cerberus Star Ring for that kind. You can find it anywhere on Earth. I know. I did. I found it everywhere I went, in everything I did.

It’s the loneliness of people trapped within themselves. The loneliness of people who have said the wrong thing so often that they don’t have the courage to say anything anymore.

The loneliness, not of distance, but of fear.

The loneliness of people who sit alone in furnished rooms in crowded cities, because they’ve got nowhere to go and no one to talk to. The loneliness of guys who go to bars to meet someone, only to discover they don’t know how to strike up a conversation, and wouldn’t have the courage to do so if they did.

There’s no grandeur to that kind of loneliness. No purpose and no poetry. It’s loneliness without meaning. It’s sad and squalid and pathetic, and it stinks of self-pity.

Oh yes, it hurts at times to be alone among the stars.

But it hurts a lot more to be alone at a party. A lot more.”


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