Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Endings and Beginnngs

This is my last morning of vacation here in the beautiful Okanagan Valley. I'm typing this out on the porch looking out at a light blue sky and sipping my coffee as I try to absorb these last few minutes before the rush of packing the car and feverishly checking under beds and in drawers to make sure that nothing was forgotten.

Beginnings and endings - which are easier to write? In my work, it's endings. I've known how the book was going to end before I even started to write it, so oftentimes I'll write the end long before I've gotten to it chronologically. I try to wrap up all the loose ends but leave a few stray pieces since I have a returning character and his story continues in the other two books of the series.

Beginnings (for me) are nasty. My opening sentence goes through countless rewrites, as does my entire opening paragraph. Where to start? At the beginning? Before the beginning? After the beginning? All are valid. Beginnings set the tone. Vocabulary choices are paramount. Start off wrong and the entire plot goes astray (or at least it does for me).

Beginnings and endings. Each word you type brings you closer to the end. And each ending brings you to a new beginning. My vacation is ended. The school year will be beginning. Take a deep breath and plunge in.


  1. Oh, beginnings by far are the more difficult for all the reasons you mentioned. My current book two, which I *thought* was done is now undergoing more revisions. Guess what section has been redone more than any other…yep, Da Beginin’. I’ve not made it better you understand, just re-written it two hundred times.

    Best Regards, Galen
    Imagineering Fiction Blog

  2. I always THINK beginnings are harder. But I've had to rewrite 2 endings now, per editor request. So I may have to rethink that idea.

    Mystery Writing is Murder

  3. Galen; Your comment posted! I'm so glad, your comments make me smile.

    Elizabeth; I still have less fear rewriting an ending than I would a beginning - as long as everything resolves in the same way!

  4. Beginnings are the most difficult. They determine whether a buyer will actually buy the book (I tend to read the opening page of books in the bookstore). They determine whether a reader will keep reading - not to mention agents and editors. But you gotta have powerful endings or the reader won't buy the next one. Still, all in all, I think beginnings get more work, re-work, and re-work than endings.

    Straight From Hel


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