A to Z Challenge 2013

Saturday, April 6, 2013


One aspect of writing I've always struggled with is ending the story.  One reason is because I used to write without a road map;  I just let myself write and let the story go wherever it wanted.  This isn't necessarily a bad thing, but all stories have to end.  And when you aren't sure where you're going with a story, you definitely can't decide where or how to appropriately end it.

These days I'm finding another way that plotting things out helps me.  I'm able to see where the ending should be and how it should go.  This also makes me think about why the story should end that way.  For example, sometimes I might want to leave the ending with the MC headed off to new frontiers.  It's not because I'm planning on a sequel, but sometimes the world they are living in is no longer where they want to be.  And what will happen after they leave is somewhere in the unforeseen future.  But it's part of a different story, which I may or may not tell later.  Sometimes it's okay to just let the "future story" go untold.

Another reason to pick an ending might be because for one moment the MC is feeling right with his world.  That one point in time has happened where the conflict is over, the MC can breathe a sigh of relief (literally or figuratively), and the story is over.  It's not to say they aren't going to keep on living, doing things;  it's just that this particular story of this part of their life is done.

As I said in the beginning however, endings can give me trouble.  I'm not sure why, except that while I'm in the middle I feel like I am either creating the story or maybe just telling it.  But when it comes to endings, sometimes I struggle with finding the "right" way to finish the tale.  Sometimes the story doesn't speak to me as loudly or the conclusion isn't obvious.  Difficult endings however, aren't necessarily a bad thing either.  They can just be difficult to write.

How do you deal with endings in your stories?


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Eric .. finding the right way to 'finish things off' is I guess always difficult for the writer ...

I struggle with posts but remember I need to tidy the post off with a good ending of some description ..

Cheers Hilary

Eric said...

Hilary - That's a good idea. I'll have to remember that one. Thanks for stopping by.