The ending of Encounters is a bit delayed.
I’d like to blame it on my new job, which is quite consuming, or on ‘real life’ which is always getting in the way, but the true reason is because it’s an ending. I hate endings. Endings are hard. I am intimidated by them. I don’t have much trouble tying up all the loose ends, but how do I evoke that feeling of satisfaction and closure for my readers? How do I make sure they close the book with a smile on their face, wistfully wishing the story was a bit longer because they don’t quite want to let the characters go yet?
A bit at loose ends today because I can’t quite get my head wrapped around this ending to Encounters, I pulled out the first novel I ever wrote and started a rewrite. It went something like this:
Original sentence: “Jori woke up suddenly, with a feeling of alarm.”
New sentence: “Jori was pulled out of a deep sleep by a terror so profound it left him gasping for air.”
Better, huh? It might take me a long time to rewrite this; it’s really quite bad. But I’m heartened at how much my writing has improved. Not only is the writing better, but it flows much more easily from my fingertips. I’m sure I agonized over that original sentence, bland as it is. I didn’t get better from taking classes or reading up on writing, I got better with practice.
Which brings me back to writing the ending of Encounters. I’ve only ever written a few endings, at least in recent memory. Other than Rough Boys, I’ve written three short stories. That’s it. Meanwhile, I’ve started eight other stories. I’m getting good at beginnings. I think I need more practice with endings.
So, I’ll work on Encounters this weekend and hope to publish the ending by next weekend. Thanks for your patience.