1. JJ_Maxx
    Offline

    JJ_Maxx Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2012
    Messages:
    3,339
    Likes Received:
    502

    Who put this brick wall in front of my finish line?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by JJ_Maxx, Jan 28, 2013.

    So I saw the theme for the new writing contest, and I started chewing on it. As always the case, a story congealed in my imagination. I was like, "This is great stuff!"

    I knew roughly how would I would start. (...and I was stoked.)

    I knew how the middle was going to work out. (Hooray!)

    I would figure out the climax at some point, I knew the diamond was there, I just waited to chip away the coal.

    So I wrote about 2k of the story, and BANG, the ending wasn't working. It didn't punch hard enough. No matter how many ways I tried to make it work, I couldn't get the magic in the ending. It's like I'm at the end of 'It's a Wonderful Life' and all I can think of is Clarence giving George his life back, with an extra hundred bucks and a beer coozie. It's unfulfilling.

    I'm just frustrated, I like the story, I like the premise, but I can't squeeze enough juice out of the ending. I don't know, maybe I just shelve it and try again next week. :(

    ~ J. J.
     
  2. KalyQT
    Offline

    KalyQT New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2013
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    I'm sorry the ending of your story isn't working for you. But, I would like to thank you for this line in your post, you gave me a much needed laugh on a crappy day. I'm sure for a long time to come I will get this image in my head when I hear any mention of 'It's a Wonderful Life' and it will definitely put a smile on my face.
     
  3. EdFromNY
    Offline

    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2010
    Messages:
    4,683
    Likes Received:
    2,534
    Location:
    Queens, NY
    J.J., I know how you feel. Just before I started on my current project, I was wrestling with a partly completed novel. Actually, I had already completed a first draft and was in the process of editing it when I realized I hadn't really done the characters justice, and that the story really should have been handled differently. I had gone back and gutted about half of it and had embarked on writing it a completely different way. Then I started editing as I wrote (which I never do), and I soon found I was going back and hashing over the same things again and again. Then I started avoiding it.

    Finally, I admitted to myself that while the idea was a good one, I had just lost forward momentum and enthusiasm in it to boot, and I decided to shelve the project indefinitely.

    Of course, it's different in a contest situation, because you have a limited time and either you are in or you are out. If time will allow, just take a break for a while - walk around the block, then go back and try it again once you have an idea of what the ending should look like.

    Best of luck.
     
  4. wavodavo
    Offline

    wavodavo Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2010
    Messages:
    54
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Washington State, USA
    You've got time to write a new story, JJ_Maxx. Maybe working on that one will trigger a more satisfying ending to your first one (Maybe pixiephobic Nick shoots Clarence dead and then forces George to rob Potter's bank -- a sort of you CAN keep a good guy down ending).

    Just kidding. I've really enjoyed your other stories. You have ending within you, Grasshoppa.
     
  5. Khaelmin
    Offline

    Khaelmin Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2012
    Messages:
    147
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Bucharest
    Eh, I know how you feel. When I proposed the theme, I already had the outlines of the story in my mind. And I thought it was very good... until I started writing it. I ended up changing almost everything about it, in the end.

    On another note, I'm sure you'll pull the ending off somehow and that it's gonna be good. The ones you've written so far have! ;)
     
  6. mammamaia
    Offline

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    19,316
    Likes Received:
    1,014
    Location:
    Coquille, Oregon
    contests are like trolley cars... another will be along in just a few minutes... so don't let yourself feel that's the only contest worth entering... or that your story has to be for a contest at all...

    put it aside, write another one and then when you get back to this one, i'll bet an ending will make itself known...

    love and inspiring hugs, maia
     
  7. peachalulu
    Offline

    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 20, 2012
    Messages:
    3,828
    Likes Received:
    2,382
    Location:
    occasionally Oz , mainly Canada
    Any advice I could give you on this issue I'd need to take myself! Lol. I actually have a folder on
    my computer that is for - Half Finished stories - there's more in them than my Finished Stories folder.
    But I do have a technique for an ending stall out. Usually, I'm over thinking it,
    so I brainstorm on a sheet of paper and come up the most absurd endings possible.
    Something that will give me a laugh. Then I backpeddle - okay, I thought of the most bizarre endings now can I come
    up with the most logical.
     
  8. JJ_Maxx
    Offline

    JJ_Maxx Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2012
    Messages:
    3,339
    Likes Received:
    502
    Thanks everyone for the advice! I let the story cool down for a few days, and then I was excited to read it again, and now I am more determined than ever to finish it. I will give the ending my best shot and then edit it when I am done.

    ~ J. J.
     
  9. mammamaia
    Offline

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    19,316
    Likes Received:
    1,014
    Location:
    Coquille, Oregon
    bravo, jj!
     
  10. JJ_Maxx
    Offline

    JJ_Maxx Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2012
    Messages:
    3,339
    Likes Received:
    502
    UPDATE!

    Guys, it was tough, but I managed to find my ending and finish the first draft. I was literally out of breath when I placed that last period! An amazing feeling though! I thought I was dead in the water, but as I kept pushing forward, the path was opened up to me. Now it is complete and clocks in at about 3100 words.

    Now I have time to let it cool for a few days, before editing! :)

    ~ J. J.
     
  11. minstrel
    Offline

    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2010
    Messages:
    8,723
    Likes Received:
    4,821
    Location:
    Near Los Angeles
    Nice going, JJ! Good luck with the editing!
     
  12. Lemex
    Offline

    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2007
    Messages:
    10,507
    Likes Received:
    3,151
    Location:
    Northeast England
    JJ_Max, your stories to the contest are always a joy to read so, honestly, I would have almost understood if you couldn't finish the story. I'm glad to hear you have worked through it though, and look forward to reading it.
     
  13. EdFromNY
    Offline

    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2010
    Messages:
    4,683
    Likes Received:
    2,534
    Location:
    Queens, NY
    Wonderful news. Good luck in the contest.
     
  14. thirdwind
    Offline

    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    Messages:
    7,351
    Likes Received:
    2,891
    Location:
    Boston
    JJ, good to hear that you pushed on and finished the story. Good luck with the contest, and keep us posted.
     

Share This Page