Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Don't Force Your Ending

That's what I keep telling myself. I want so SO badly to be done with the first draft of my wip--I'm in the midst of writing my first YA fiction fantasy saga-ish book right now--but, alas, I'm not finished.

I'm ALMOST finished. But I haven't entered the last period, haven't printed off drafts for my beta readers to sink their teeth into yet. I'm writing the penultimate battle scene at the moment, and there are still two major sequences to go after that.

While it would be super convenient to just hurry up and contrive some ending and slap it on there, I can't allow this. Because books, once they get going, take on a life of their own, and you cannot suffocate that life. It just has to wind down of its own accord.

And let me tell you, it's taking its sweet time.

I can feel I'm close. It's kind of like at night, when all of the lights are off. You stick out your hand because you know the bathroom door is close, it's only a few inches away, but you can't quite see it.

Not to equate my book with a bathroom. But you get the point. If you're in a similar position as me, realizing that even once you finish your book you still have months of edits ahead of you and, doggone it, wouldn't it be better to just finish the draft and get it into your readers' hands asap?--don't succumb to this urge.

Finish what you started. Give your book/story/play some space and let it end the way it's supposed to end. Otherwise, your readers will sense that you tacked on an ending. And that's a huge mistake because it makes it seem like either A.) you don't have a very firm grasp on the internal universe of your story, B.) you're in it for the money and are just cranking stories out like some book-writing machine, or C.) you just got bored and said, "To heck with it."

Why would a reader stick with your book if you weren't even willing to? Haste makes waste. So do the right thing!

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