The Walking Dead is not the kind of show anyone at AMC is eager to be rid of. It consistently pulls in great ratings, and the network seems determined to continue it all but indefinitely, what with The Talking Dead and a newly ordered companion series around to placate anyone for whom 12 or so seasons of zombie apocalypse simply isn’t enough. If AMC had its way, the show might go on forever, ambling vacant-eyed through different time slots, its original purpose long forgotten as it mindlessly devours new shows before they have a chance to defend themselves.

However, the comic book series the show is based on will end sooner or later. Writer Robert Kirkman—who’s also an executive producer on the show—said as much in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, confirming that there is indeed a light at the end of the long, dark tunnel full of zombies who want to eat your face. “I do know what I’m building toward, yes,” Kirkman said. “I don’t know exactly what issue that’s going to fall on, per se, and I do have a lot of road laid out before that that is going to take a long time, but I certainly know exactly what I’m building to.”

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Kirkman said that he “nailed down exactly what I want the ending to be” about a year ago, but also said that he liked to have “between two and 10 years of story” mapped out ahead of time, so it’s anyone’s guess as to when that ending will arrive. In the meantime, the world of The Walking Dead is populated by millions of zombies and, like, a few hundred people with shotguns, so they’d best get to it.