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Friday, July 1, 2011

Fear and the Obvious Ending

Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
- Matthew 7:13-14 KJV

A while back I talked about being painted into a corner with the ending for JANE DOE. I hope you'll forgive the Bible verse, but this is what keeps running through my head as I try to write the ending for EVEN VILLAINS FALL IN LOVE. A good ending leaves the characters with no choices, they have to follow the narrow path they've limited themselves to. Anything else feels contrived.

That, I fear, is where I've landed myself. The ending for EVFiL feels forced.

A few hundred words away from the ending I despair for this novella. It feels contrived. Forced. Like a bad B-movie with a $10 budget. Here's what's holding me back....

1- It's meant to be a romance/SFR novella but the principle female is off-screen half the time.

2- It's meant to be a romance but there are kids in there. I really can only recall a few romance novels with kids, and none by the publisher I'm hoping to get.

3- It's first person and I'm pretty sure my hunky hero *never* describes himself. I can fix that in edits, but I feel dumb for not having it in the first draft.

4 - Driving to the end fight with four kids in a minivan is a hilarious idea, but it makes zero logical sense. That means I have no ending.


I think that's my biggest problem right there.

I'm a perfectionist, a recovering one at any rate. You can't get past 25 as a true perfectionist. You either recover, or you kill yourself for how dumb you were at 19 when you thought you owned the world.

But that fear of getting it wrong is a real stumbling block.

Even knowing I can edit.

Even knowing this is a rough draft.

What if I screw up the ending? What then?

I'm ready to collapse in tears over this! Or maybe that's the pent up stress from the move... whatever it is, I need to move on. This is my vent and whinge post. Now I'm going to tack an ending on this sucker and edit the living tar out of it!


  1. I'm so sorry! Rough drafts are so hard it's a wonder that we ever make it through at all. I did a post on this just a couple of days ago, and it amazed me again how much blogging helps me work through what I'm thinking -- whether venting and whining, or a forced celebration of suckiness. I hope you're feeling better now, too!

  2. I started the post with the idea that I'd really messed up the story and the ending was horrid. Looking at the list I realized that my real problem is this *is* a first draft, and I hate the flaws. I want to show something perfect and pretty to everyone right now, but the story isn't there yet.

    For now I'm hitting Write or Die, pounding the words out, and I'll fix it later.

    I'll have to drop by and read your blog post too. It's good to know I'm not alone. :o)

  3. Other than being a litle impatient i don't think you have a problem here. As you say this is a rough draft. Perfection is attainable it just isn't attainable first time out. You seem to have a good idea of what isn't working and what the issues you will need to deal with. Are you sure it isn't just the amount of work it will take that's putting you off?

    Moody Writing

  4. Mood - Some of it could be the amount of work. I really am a recovering perfectionist though. Too many easy grades in school as a child. I came to expect perfection without effort. It's a very nasty trap. I can write essays and newspaper articles in one draft, but never fiction.

    It's a hang-up I need to get over. :o)