Wednesday, January 17, 2018

The Final Chapter

Paula is struggling with her final chapter!  

Usually when I get to the final chapter of a ‘work in progress’, I know where I’m going with it. It may need some thought and ‘sorting out’ to ensure I tie up all the loose ends, but at least I have a rough idea how to do that.

Not so with 'Irish Shadows', my current WIP. There are several fairly complex plot strands running through this story, and I’ve realised I resolved two of them too soon, so first I need to go back and rewrite parts of a couple of chapters. Then I have to decide which other problems/issues need to be brought to a satisfying conclusion – and, of course, how to do that. Last but not least, I need to work out just when the final scene takes place, and how I get all the necessary characters together for this, so that it doesn’t appear too ‘convenient’. Most of my novels have a slight twist at the end, but so far the twist for this story is proving elusive. I've thought of, but then dismissed, several possible twists as being either unrealistic or too contrived.

Fortunately, I have an excellent brainstorming ‘partner’ – not a writer, but a reader who knows what she likes, and also knows what questions to ask me. She’s also happy to listen while I talk through the problems – and sometimes that is the best way to sort them out. I’m hoping that after we have lunch together tomorrow I’ll have a clearer idea of how to deal with my final chapter!

Have you ever had big problems with your final chapter – and, if so, how did you resolve them?

8 comments:

  1. Of course not. Everything falls perfectly into place every time. Ha! That was a joke. If I'm very lucky, I can ride the wave from the black moment to the end without huge issues, but that only happens on occasion. Currently, the heroine in my WIP has absolutely no purpose and I've finished the first draft. I spent so much time working out my hero that I completely forgot about her other than her reactions to him. Ugh. And every time I brainstorm, I come up with fantastic scenes for the next book in the series. So I feel your pain, although I suspect you're in a much better place than I am. Hoping your brainstorm/lunch goes well!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hope you can sort out your heroine, too!

      Delete

  2. i haven't had an ending problem YET.
    But, you all have written many more books than I have.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is the first time I've really not known where I'm going with the final chapter!

      Delete
  3. Since I tend to write all over the place, often I'll have my ending written before the middle, so then it's a matter of making sure my characters get where they need to be. And it always involves much tweaking since they've grown and learned so much throughout the course of the story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I usually have a pretty good idea about my final chapter, even though I don't write it in advance (I have to write in linear fashion). But this one is taking some time and a lot of thinking to sort out!

      Delete
  4. Update! Brainstorming session worked, all systems go now for final chapter! :-)

    ReplyDelete