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  1. The_Raven

    The_Raven Member

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    Would it be possible to publish multiple endings for a series?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by The_Raven, Sep 23, 2015.

    Hi, I've been wondering whether it would be possible when my story is eventually published if it would be possible to have multiple endings published in the last installment of the series.

    What I mean by this is I want to know if the writing could be changed subtly throughout the last couple of installments to fit different endings. I have 3 - 4 different endings planned but I don't want to decide which one to use like most other books do. Would it be possible to have it to where one bookstore would carry one "strain" (for lack of a better word) and another have a different strain? Each strain would have a different ending, but no way to differentiate which ending it is until the reader finishes the last book. I mostly want to know if this could be possible because I want the readers to argue with each other about which of the endings is a "true" ending.
     
  2. ClassyCanuck

    ClassyCanuck Member

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    Are your intentions for your books to be choose your own ending? Life the reader chooses what ending they want and continue reading the next book?
     
  3. The_Raven

    The_Raven Member

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    Not exactly. I want the readers to not be aware that there are multiple endings until the whole series is finished. I want the writing of some certain events in the last 2 books or so to be changed very subtly to accommodate a different ending. The readers (hopefully) won't be aware of this.

    Whenever they buy a copy of the last installment, they will not know which ending it is until they've finished the book.
     
  4. ClassyCanuck

    ClassyCanuck Member

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    So, what you are trying to do is make two possible endings for the series that can happen with the events in the last two books? Are the two endings going to be in one book at the end, showing two possible conclusions? Or, will it be two book each being the last book that both have different endings from the other. Similar stories in both, subtle changes in both resulting in both ending different.

    I'm sorry if I'm asking too many questions, I am just trying to figure out what you are trying to do so I can better answer your question. :)
     
  5. The_Raven

    The_Raven Member

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    What I want is multiple "strains" published. Each "strain" contains different writing to accommodate a different ending. The reader will not be aware of these "strains". So yes, a reader could buy two different copies of the same book (the last one, to be specific) and experience a different ending. The chances of finding a different ending may vary, though.
     
  6. ClassyCanuck

    ClassyCanuck Member

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    All right. That is actually a really cool idea.
    I don't know how it would work from a publisher's standpoint, but if presented properly I couldn't see why you wouldn't be able to publish it. The hard part you may run into is trying to portray this idea to reader, although if you get a few readers behind the strains that will take care of itself.
    The best option for this kind of idea would probably be to self-publish, at least the first strain or so to build a readership and to have interest backing it. This also gives you an idea on feedback, and gives you more control/ flexibility with how you want the strains handled.
    From there, if you want to have a publisher handle it, you have something to support why these publishers should accept your strains. :)
     
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  7. ManOrAstroMan

    ManOrAstroMan Magical Space Detective Contributor

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    They did this with the movie Clue, based on the board game of the same name. (If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it. Tim Curry, Madeline Kahn, Christopher Lloyd, and several other stellar comedic actors.)
    If you've ever played Clue, you know it's about solving a murder mystery.
    There were three different endings filmed, and different theaters were sent different versions. In each ending, Wadsworth the butler (Curry) delivers a summation, but with a different killer unmasked in each version.
    When it was released on VHS, after the first ending, a title card appeared with text to the effect of : "but maybe it happened this way...", and the second ending was played through. Then, another card ("But here's what really happened...") And the third ending.
    The DVD release gives the option of randomly selecting one of the endings, a la theatrical release, or all three, a la VHS.
     
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  8. Aidan Stern

    Aidan Stern Active Member

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    I really like this idea. The "strains" idea is cool, but a little pricey for the reader. Maybe you could make it like a, for lack of a better word, treasure hunt. That's a really crappy word for it, but the concept of having people read the same book with different endings... It could be a really good conversation and discussion topic. Perhaps instead of writing the same thing over and over again with different endings, you could write the solid book, leave it hanging, then write another book that includes all the endings.
     
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  9. ManOrAstroMan

    ManOrAstroMan Magical Space Detective Contributor

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    I have heard of books having an online component. Like, every so many chapters, you go to this site, enter a code or answer questions, and find online content, like videos or extra chapters.
     

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