The Joys (and sorrows) of Finishing a Novel

For those following this blog, you may have noticed my lack of frequent posts. And if you look up at the title of this post, or hell, just keep on reading, you’ll see why. Yesterday I finished writing another novel (hurray me), and that has kept me away from blog posting. But now I’m back and it’s hard to say if that is for better or worse. Anyways, enough with the news part, let’s get to the main subject of this post: finishing novels.

Whether you are reading or writing novels, finishing them is a joyful sorrow. On the one hand, you have been reading or writing just to get to the end and see what happens. You’ve been waiting so long, so very very long to get that satisfying (or sometimes not) conclusion. But then you get that conclusion and there are no more words left. The characters you have grown to love are gone. Now what? This would be where the sorrow sets in.

This is a funny dilemma that happens in all sorts of media, from books and writing to movies to even the end of a favorite comic strip. We grow to love our characters (they aren’t just the creator’s characters, they become OUR characters as we live out their actions and pains and joys with them) and don’t want to see them go. What is a person to do? That’s a tough one. Sometimes I want to mourn their passing, other times I want to forget they even existed, but there is one method that I always find works well: move on. Find another book, movie, whatever it is, and dive into it. Find some new characters, new personalities, new dilemmas. You’ll be on the edge of your seat again, enjoying the ride while casually reminiscing about those other characters you almost forgot. And don’t feel bad, don’t feel like you have betrayed those old characters, because after all, it’s what they would have wanted.

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3 responses to “The Joys (and sorrows) of Finishing a Novel

  1. Congrats on finishing your novel! I don’t write, but I know exactly the feeling when I finish a book. I sometimes wish I slowed down to savor it. It truly does feel as though you almost lost a friend when you finish the book, however hopefully the friend has helped teach you something to move on to something new. Good post!

  2. I do like going back to the same characters and reading about their next adventures. I’m reading the Odd Thomas stories by Dean Koontz at the moment and the familiarity of the character draws me back time and time again. Happy writing 🙂

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