Friday, May 1, 2009

Help! Intervention Needed!

Picture by emdot

I'm almost done with Blessed, but I'm really finding a lot of reluctance in writing this last chapter. I know I'll have lots of revising and cutting and editing to do, so it's not like I'm actually saying goodbye to these characters. But once I finish, there is something so final about it!

Being a therapist, I'm trying to analyze why I have this unwillingness to finish writing Blessed. I know how it's going to end. Every night I tell myself I'm going to finish it, and then I get distracted (purposefully?) playing a widget game on my MacBook, writing a blog post, ANYthing but writing the end of this book!

Likely I need some sort of intervention, since I've been at this juncture for about a week. So I'm asking for writing motivation from this great community of writers! What helps you finish your novels? Why or why don't you have a problem with the end stage of writing the first draft?

Any motivation is appreciated ahead of time! Thanks!

Wordle: signature

17 comments:

Marybeth said...

I was the opposite. I relished every last word. I looked forward to typing out those last 3 words...I'd had them planned out for months. It was like finally putting on that diamond wedding ring you'd seen in the box for months. The one you'd been imagining on your finger. Once I had written them down (or typed them out rather) I shot up from my chair and smiled. Then called everyone who know I was writing a book and sang the "I finished my Novel" song! What an accomplishment!!!!

So although I can not understand how you are feeling, I do sympathize with your struggle. Let the words linger, they'll come out when they are ready. But eventually you do need to put your little baby on the bus to Kindergarten don't you! :)

Jill Kemerer said...

Don't worry, Jeannie, these characters will never leave you. I still think about one of my earlier books, and I get the tight throat and tears pricking the backs of my eyes. I just loved the heroine's journey in that one.

When you find you're missing those characters, go back and read the book again. We do it with our favorite authors; why wouldn't we do it with our own work?

And, this helps me the most, start a new project ASAP. You won't have time to miss your old book when you're working on a new one.

Good luck on the final pages!

Eric said...

I completely understand how you feel. Although I am really far into my current WIP, I'm having difficulty getting from where I'm at to the end. I know where I want it to end up, I just am unsure of the trip along the way. I don't have much advice for you, but don't feel like you're the only one.

Jody Hedlund said...

I'm nearing the end of mine too! I always have trouble making sure I wrap up all of the loose threads! Sometimes that can make me want to take a step back. But I'm also very anxious to get it done now that the end is in sight! I have about two chapters to go (approx. 10,000 words).I know, let's have a race to see who can finish theirs first, you or me! Will that motivate you? :)

Tess said...

I felt that way and I think it has to do with a subconscious concern about moving on to the next stage (putting it out there for critique). Wait! Who's the therapist here? See - you're getting me all topsey turvey :)

T. Anne said...

What an exciting time you've come to! I always refer to it as landing the plane. I usually let the characters and story guide me naturally, then once I hit that final word I feel oddly free and sad.

Jeannie Campbell said...

ya'll are awesome, thanks! it's nice to know i'm not alone out there!

jody - you're on. i'm waiting to hear back from a lawyer about some legal questions i have necessary to wrap up the villain's story...but other than that....

tess - you make me laugh. almost every comment. do therapists make you nervous? :)

Jennifer Shirk said...

Isn't that funny? I'm never sad at ending a story. I love to tie everything all up in nice pink bow.

It's the stuff getting to the end that's a drag to me. :)

Terri Tiffany said...

I'm close to my end too and I'm not sure I want it to end! Cause then I'll miss writing it and will have to do the dreaded edits.
Good for you though for being so close!

Lady Glamis said...

Good luck with your ending! I always have trouble with them. I think it helps to take a short break and make sure you're wrapping everything up the right way.

KLo said...

Several of my characters really need some therapy, so I'll more than likely be e-mailing you : )

In terms of endings, I hate writing them. I think the main reason for this is, I love writing so much and every WIP is almost like a fabulous journey ... I just don't want it to ever end : )

Jeannie Campbell said...

so many of fab writers are at the end of our current WIPs! congrats to all of you! and mucho gracias for the motivation and encouragement! love this community of writers!

Katie said...

Do I need to call you and whip you into shape? Because I will! Or how about this - think about how awesome it will be to move to MS and bring a finished book with you!!

Niki Turner said...

I resemble your post. I finished my second draft last Saturday with a 13 hour writing marathon. I had to schedule it, and tell other people I was going to "FINISH the thing today." That accountability helped me push through the distractions (who's the pest who created the Pac-Man widget?)!

Jeannie Campbell said...

there's a pac-man widget?!?! what!! i'm totally on that....

Eileen Astels Watson said...

Maybe try thinking of it as a movie. You definitely want to see the end. And then start thinking of a sequel. See, it doesn't have to end in just one book. Maybe that'll allow you to end this chapter of their life now, though. Good luck with this. It's tough, but so necessary.

PatriciaW said...

I find that when I'm reluctant to move forward in something, there's a fear lurking somewhere nearby. Fear of getting the ending wrong? Fear of the next steps after THE END? Fear of submitting? Fear of rejection? Fear of inability to write another (call this the "Margaret Mitchell syndrome", if you must)

Move forward, Jeannie. You see the end, now write it. Then, because you are a GOOD writer, allow yourself to revel in that milestone, then begin taking next steps: starting a new novel, revising this novel and submitting it, etc.