Like Kafka's other novels, "The Trial" was never completed, although it does include a chapter which brings the story to an end. Because of this, there are some inconsistencies and discontinuities in narration within the novel, such as disparities in timing.
After Kafka's death in 1924 his friend and literary executor Max Brod edited the text for publication by Verlag Die Schmiede. The original manuscript is held at the Museum of Modern Literature, Marbach am Neckar, Germany. In 1999, the book was listed in "Le Monde"'s 100 Books of the Century and as No. 2 of the Best German Novels of the Twentieth Century.