Saturday, October 25, 2014

#Plan4WriMo Day 25: How Will Your Novel End?

Most writers who do NaNoWriMo will tell you that you’re unlikely to reach your story’s end during the month of November. I’m living proof that they’re wrong. But you also might decide to write your scenes out of order—since you know where you’re headed and how you’re getting there by now.

But before I got obsessed with story architecture I had a different/more loose method of plotting that involved writing my last scene first. I did that because even though I still thought I was a pantser I wanted to know where I was headed. So even if the terms Plot Point One, Pinch Point, Midpoint and Lull make your pants itch, if you’ve been following my blog this month you’re either a masochist or curious about plotting.

My challenge for you today is to contemplate how your story will end.

But it’s more than just ending the plot—you’ve got to tie up relationship arcs, characterization arcs, subplots, and everything into a nice neat last bit of bookage. If you don’t want to think about your book’s climactic resolution quite yet, make a list of everything you’ll need to cover during your final chapters.

For those of you who are thinking “well this is the first book in a series, so it’s not really going to have an ending…”

There’s a reason why I’ve been using the examples I have all month.

PHILOSOPHER’S STONE. DIVERGENT. THE HUNGER GAMES. All of these books could have stood on their own two feet if nothing followed them. Why? Because the writers, agents, and editors had to guarantee the first book would sell before they tried to sell the second. No matter if it’s a standalone novel or the first of fifty, you’re writing a standalone novel right now.

How satisfied do you want your reader to be? Will this be a hearts and flowers happy ending or something more along the lines of ALLEGIANT? (Yup, still bitching about that book, a year later.)

Not a lot of links today because you’re the only one who really knows what you need here.


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