1. carsun1000
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    carsun1000 Active Member

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    Should I kill her or let her be?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by carsun1000, Jul 4, 2011.

    Hello fellow writers

    I am getting to the end of my book and found myself facing a dilemma. One of my characters is an old woman (85) who had ordered about eight people killed through a hitman. She also has breast cancer and is in the late stages which means she could die anytime. However, as the police are closing in on her, she has access to a syringe that could end it all. Should I let the police get to her or should I let her go on her own term considering that she may not survive a judicial process? By the way, she only killed people who hurt her in the past. What would you do?
     
  2. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    If it were me, I wouldn't have breast cancer because I'm a man. Oh... what would I do if I were YOU?

    I'd kill the bitch. She caused eight people to die, for cryin' out loud. If one of the cops shoots her, thinking she's going to use the syringe as a weapon, that could be a kind of justified death, you know? She tries to use death as an escape, and it ends up being further incarceration, kind of.
     
  3. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    Actually men can get breast cancer too. It's not common, but it happens.

    I'm not sure what I would do, but this is your story. You need to do what you think is the best. Personally I think I would have let the cops get to her, but others feel different.
     
  4. MRD
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    MRD Senior Member

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    I'd say it's not really down to the writer, but the character. Is she someone who's emotionally strong enough to end her own life, just like that? Would it be out of character.

    Is she someone who can die happy, now that she has had her revenge?

    It all depends on the character, really.
     
  5. another wasted day
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    another wasted day Member

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    I think you ought to have her kill herself. After all, she had the heart to have the 8 people killed when she thought it was time for them do die. This might also be the case when it comes to realizing the necessity of her own death. Then again, maybe all killers are cowards when it comes to their own lives, so I suppose you could also cash in on the irony that she can't end her own life when it comes down to it.
     
  6. carsun1000
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    carsun1000 Active Member

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    I have thought about the Police breaking in as she started convulsing from the effect of the drug she just injected herself with and have her taken away with a possibility of a full recovery so can face the music!
     
  7. Protar
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    Protar Active Member

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    I reckon you should kill her. She kind of deserves it after all. But of course it's up to you, the author.
     
  8. HorusEye
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    HorusEye Contributing Member Contributor

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    End the book with her holding the syringe and hearing the cops coming up the stairs.

    Dum-dum-dum... Leave the dilemma to the reader's imagination.
     
  9. carsun1000
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    carsun1000 Active Member

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    I will have to admit, I didnt think about leaving the readers hanging. That s like watching a TV show that makes you say "there's got to be a second season. That can't be it!"
     
  10. digitig
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    digitig Contributing Member Contributor

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    Seconded. It doesn't matter what we'd do, it doesn't matter what you want to happen, it doesn't matter what the reader wants to happen, what counts is what the character would actually do.
     
  11. MatthewR
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    MatthewR Member

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    I also like that ending.

    OR

    None of the above. Both feel a bit "ho-hum"
    Go for something outlandish.

    A completely "non -relevent" minor character from before somehow avenges one of the murders because they were related to "so-and-so" so they shoot her in the courtroom while she is facign charges.

    OR go all "seven" on the ending.

    Her last victim is herself faced with only suicide the slow death of cancer or jail, her last contract killer kills her, but he is set-up to take the fall for all 9 murders.)

    Something off the wall and unexpected. Never let the audience see it coming. Then chop off Ned Stark's head.
     
  12. Unit7
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    Unit7 Contributing Member Contributor

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    See this is what I was going to suggest. Leave the ending open to the readers imagination. Of course you have to becareful about it. It can easily backfire on you and turn more readers against it then for it.

    But sometimes when it is left unresolved it can be a powerful ending. I remember one Law and Order SVU(I think it was SVU) where the whole case wasn't clearly defined as to who did what. Was she raped or was it consentual? At the very end of the episode the foreman of the jury stands up and says 'We find the defendant' and it cuts out right there leaving the audience wondering.

    It all depends on how you set it up. I'd consider having her attempt suicide a few or a couple of times throughout the story. Once at the begining and another time sometime in the middle when her plans are not going to plan making her question her plan.

    The final time would be left hanging.

    Of course that's just my opinion. I don't think I have ever really wrote a story like that so not sure if my suggestion would work or not.
     
  13. flipflop
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    flipflop Senior Member

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    i would base it on the style of the story so far. if there has been a lot of speculation and mystery through out the story, leave the audience hanging, if not they will want and answer. if they dont find out they will feel cheated

    whether she kills herself or not is down to the personallity of the character not on what you would like to write unless you change the story and the character
     
  14. thewordsmith
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    thewordsmith Contributing Member Contributor

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    (About 11% of all breast cancer cases were men last I read)

    I'd have to second this notion. You are the only one who knows how best to handle your story. Which is the best final stroke? Suicide or the 'hammer' of Justice?
     
  15. Jewbacabra
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    Jewbacabra New Member

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    personally I like the hanging ending. That shit gets me good.

    I would write a few versions of the ending and see which one fit best.
     
  16. BillyxRansom
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    BillyxRansom Active Member

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    This. You already know who your character is, the journey has come this far.

    Now you just have to listen to her. What DOES she want? Does she want to get away, or does she think, at the last minute, she deserves to be caught? What kind of woman is she? Vindictive, or the victim?
     
  17. LostInFiction
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    LostInFiction Senior Member

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    An interesting thread. Personally, I would look to the characters for an answer or think what each option would reveal about the overall story or characters within. Would the woman want to 'leave' early or would she want to see more? Having got away with 8 murders to this point would she think she was vulnerable or have some kind of positivity that she would be okay regardless?
    Is she going to end it because she is content that she has finished here on 'fiction' earth or because she has no hope?
    Sometimes the way a character finishes their story says more about them than their actual story.
    The cliffhanger ending is a nice idea particularly if the reader has a sense of what they think the woman would do, even if it's not confirmed.
    You could get some friends to read the story and then say what they think she would do...
    Good luck!
     
  18. Mobhit
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    Mobhit Senior Member

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    That's how I would do actually. Write each Version as you see in your head. See which one works best.
     
  19. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Men die of breast cancer too.

    Matthew: Which ending better fits the story you are trying to tell? Clearly, whether she survives or not changes the tone of the story considerably. Either choice is valid.

    You have to decide which story you are telling.
     

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