I know the title of this post seems obvious. The most important part of a book after all is the ending. People can disagree with me all they want but I will stand my ground, you can come back from a shitty beginning and middle but there’s no coming back from a shitty end. The culmination of all your hard work into a rushed pile of garbage is something you want to avoid. It would be much better to smear fertilizer all over the page and let a beautiful vegetable garden sprout on the final pages.
Lol sorry, I didn’t mean to go poetic at the end. I’m a little out of it this morning. It’s been a long week at school and it’s only Tuesday. But I digress.
As I mentioned in the title, before you start writing you should know the destination. This is not a call to outline the entire book, just know the cardinal direction of it. That way you can spend the entire novel trying to get there.
The reason I am emphasizing knowing your ending is that one issue I have when I write is that I think I know my ending then I write myself out of it and have to come up with something new.
The reason I am posting this advice today is that yesterday I finished my rough draft of Third Life and since I now have a physical ending that I’m in love with I know how to fill the rest of the story with actions, clues, and props that will make the ending POP. Honestly, this is more a post to remind me that I need to focus more on my endings before every aspect of the writing process. Far too many times I have changed my ending mid-story and while being flexible when writing has opened me up to some pretty cool twists it’s also sent me down some pretty miserable rabbit holes.
The Absolute for example used to be about a writer who wanted to kill God. Now it’s about a painter remembering the importance of family. Both of these stories have absolutely sucked lol (part of the reason I’ve taken a break from editing The Absolute).
Wow, this post is already longer than it needed to be. I’m just gonna end it here and repeat the title. Know your ending before you start writing. It makes the process SO much easier.