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Adrenaline Rush Ending

  As fast paced and climatic as the ending usually is I thought this was a fitting title. Why? Because anyone who has written a novel knows how it feels to finally get to the end. If you don’t, I’ll tell you.

You get to that final scene, that last confrontation where all the crap hits the ceiling fan and whatever your MC has been battling, the MC goes to face head on.  Whether they go with someone or alone, your heart starts to pound, because you know this is it. The end is in sight and so we get on a rolling writing the ending. If your MC has a physical antagonist who they literally have to fight, the writer feels like they’re in the heat of the fight about to get blown away by the antagonist. If our antagonist is of the less dangerous variety, meaning the antagonist is just someone who gets on your MC’s nerve and makes life a living hell for them, this is the time the MC finally stands up for themselves. While we sit in the chair to write it, we feel every emotion. We feel the character’s anger, being fed up, ready for this annoyance to be over which is why at the end the MC always resorts to confrontation. For the writer, we’re only ten or twenty pages from the end of the novel and just want to get the story over with. It’s like being at the end of the race and getting that extra burst of speed and energy need to finish the race strong.

But that can be a problem…

Although I compared the ending of a novel to the end of a race, that doesn’t mean we can just rush right through the end. I’ve read some really good books that built up to what should have been a really good ending or at least a damn good confrontation that obviously the writer rushed through or in the excitement of the moment changed their mind about and went for a less… climatic ending. It happened in Breaking Dawn. Stephanie Meyers builds up to this huge confrontation for a book and a half and then she changes her mind and establishes things through diplomatic talking that could have been done in the last book.

So while it’s fine to have an adrenaline high ending, I don’t agree with the rush part. We have to take the same time and consideration in the ending that we do the rest of the novel and sometimes the final confrontation takes a couple of chapters. Don’t designate it all to one chapter. I think my longest confrontation took place over the span of four which was about fifty to sixty pages. Continue to pace the ending of your novel and write the ending you’ve built up to and set up for. Don’t spend a whole novel building up to a confrontation and then decide at the last minute it’s not going to happen, that everyone is going to reconcile and forgive each other like in the above mentioned vampire story. Maybe in Dora, but not in these novels people. Make sure your ending matches what you’ve built up to.

What does this have to do with NaNoWriMo?  You’re down to the wire and there’s five more days of November left. You really need to finish this novel and you’re at the end. You can do this. So you shoot down a cup of coffee, turn off that internet and start writing. Not only is adrenaline from writing the ending getting to you, but also the rush of being at the end of NaNoWriMo and being so close to finishing. This is a perfect situation where you can and may just rush through the end and a bad ending can really make or break the novel. The ending is the exact opposite of the beginning. We’ve got to get through the beginning for the sake of hooking the reader and explanations later, but the writer can afford to slow down a little when they get to the ending. The reader’s there so in all likelihood they’re going to finish it.  So don’t rush it. In fact, readers like a longer ending or climax, where most of the loose ends are tied, and we get that satisfying confrontation the writing has built up to.

Trust me, you don’t want to go back and fill in your ending. Rewriting the ending is a pain. I’ve done it. So take your time, don’t rush too much end your novel with the same bang and thoughtfulness of the rest of the novel. You’ll love yourself for doing so.

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