Tuesday, March 8, 2011


I have many, many stories that are half finished.

I have never been good at endings. I can't see them coming, I don't know how to act when they are upon me, and I don't know how to recover from them and go find a beginning.

Endings are tough to survive and tough to anticipate, so it makes sense they are tough to write.

Expected or otherwise, endings have a tendency to leave scars. They mark the finish to a part of your life. The longer or bigger that part was, the deeper the scar.

They don't have to leave scars. Sometimes an ending is the best thing that could possibly happen.

And sometimes the ending is the most painful way, but it's the only way. Nothing can last. Impermanence and change are parts of life. Even knowing they are coming doesn't make them any easier.

Fairy tale endings rarely come out of the tales and wrap our real lives up so nicely with such pretty ribbon. The endings we are shown in movies are not true endings. They are the happy places the writers chose to end the story. But a true ending means something is over, done. Too often, the end of a movie shows us the beginning. The newly wedded couple, off to begin a new life together.

They have endured and survived countless endings to get to that point. A point in their lives where they are healed enough to embark on a new beginning that will have an ending of its own. No one knows what that ending will be, but they have the hope and the love to take the risk that the ending will be a peaceful one, many years in the future.

As I'm still figuring out endings and scars and threads left hanging, my characters are left hanging in limbo, endless. It gives them countless possibilities, but it also make them very fictional. Very one-dimensional. Because everyone experiences endings, in one form or another, in their life. My characters cannot live, cannot spring to life, until they figure out their endings.

Until I figure out their endings.

No comments: