Tuesday, July 21, 2015

I’ll Take That Dessert Now

I am currently in a vigorous escapade of writing the big ol’ climatic ending of Burning Thorns. I’ve been writing, well, a lot lately with my 30k word goal in June and now pushing forward to make it to the end of the story.

Thorin FunnyThis is how we all feel when getting to the ending, right?

Due to all the writing, I was recently feeling some burnout and really just wanted to close my laptop and go take a long nap. (And by long I mean like a week.) Writing is my life passion, but sometimes you can have a little too much of something, no matter what it is. (I mean, Ice Cream Mountain sounds like a glorious idea but once the tummy aches start settling in we may rethink it. . .maybe.) I still really, really love Burning Thorns. I had no real problem with the story, it was just the writing all the time that was getting to me.

Sleepy kitten gif

Then this last week I finished all the parts leading up to the climax and delved right into the actual thing. And you know what? Writing suddenly felt like magic again. I wanted to write, I still want to write. I’m excited about writing all over again and am encouraged that I can make it to the end, and soon.

I mean, all the characters are together and each have their own agendas and some are threatening others and dark fae are attacking and it’s a big, horrible mess and. . .

Wait what?

Why am I so excited about writing this rather traumatic stuff? I asked myself this and I realized: I love endings. Writing endings anyway. Finishing reading a book I love or a TV series not so much, but writing those endings? Exhilarating!

So this got me thinking about different sections of writing.

I always think I love to start new stories. Having a blank canvas with endless possibilities is such a thrilling thought, right? But then I sit down and stare at that blank canvas and suddenly all those endless possibilities are not so thrilling but overwhelming. I’ve got to find the perfect sentence to start out with, figure out an entire world, discover numerous characters, and then there’s that plot thing that is apparently important. Overwhelming, much?

The first time I actually realized that beginnings really aren’t my thing (despite thinking they were for like my whole writing life >.>) was during NaNoWriMo 2013. I had outlined, made thorough character bios, the whole balooga (we’re pretending that’s a word, okay?), not to mention this was the fourth book in a series so I knew the world quite well. But no amount of outlining and character bios can make you discover your characters and story like actually writing. This was my first time in these characters’ heads and it took some time to really grasp their voices, their emotions, their way of life. It took a while to establish myself in the story world.

For me, beginnings are awkward and slow and take a lot of work.

Spongebob Writing gifLiterally me trying to write beginnings. Hours of work, no progress.

But not just with the beginning of stories. I also do this with the beginning of a chapter, or even just a new scene. Basically, I don’t like establishing scenes. Having to come up with clever ways to open the scene and set it up and show who’s all there and what’s going on hurts my wee brainSnoopy Writing ComicStarting out something new is so hard to me, but once I’ve got everything setup and the momentum going, it’s smooth sailing. Even if I take a long break from writing and come back to the middle of a scene, I can jump in so much easier than when I have to begin with an entirely new one. I need everything established already before I can really begin moving. Because of this, the first few chapters are hard, but once I’ve gotten past the first two or three, I do start really enjoying the writing. Beginnings may not be my thing, but I guess almost beginnings can be a lot of fun.

So what about that ever intimidating middle? I have mixed feelings in that area. On the one hand, by the time we’re at the middle, things are definitely established, my characters and I are quite familiar with each other. So honestly, I rather like middles. They’re the meat of the story after all. While beginnings are appetizers and endings are the long sought after dessert, beginnings are the main course. And, well, I really like meals. What can I say?

BUT middles can be daunting. Sometimes you start eyeing that dessert and realize with dread you still have half your meal left that must be finished before you can even have a lick of that cake. I can absolutely get burned out in the midst of all the middleness. But I (try) to keep trucking along because. . .


That’s the main reason we eat meals, right? For the dessert afterwards? (Don’t tell me you disagree.) The appetizer and main course were good, but gimme dat cake!

Stitch Cake gif

I love endings. But again, not just story endings. I love chapter endings as well. Like I said, once everything is established and that momentum has kicked in, everything starts flowing so much easier. I write the second half of a chapter probably two or three times faster than the first half.

And then we get to the actual ending and ah, I love it! I don’t know if I’ve ever written an ending where I wasn’t having fun. There are many, many moments in writing where it feels like such a chore and I question my life choices. But then I get to that climax and remember all over again how delicious writing can be (see what I did there?). Basically every word has led up to the climax, all that work now comes together for this moment.

While before I wrote at a snail’s pace, endings is where my inner ninja kicks in and the words just explode from my fingers. If only that would happen the rest of the time. . .

In conclusion, I love writing endings. (You know, in case you haven’t grasped that yet.) I love seeing everything come together, experiencing the excitement (and drama) of the climax, and then the (usually) happy finale where everything has been fixed and my characters can get on with their lives without their author torturing them.

And, you have to admit, finishing a book is probably the best feeling any writer can have. Too bad it takes so painfully long to reach those endings. But it’s worth it. So very, very worth it!

Now watch the ending of Burning Thorns be painful and fall like molasses since I’ve written all this. Because my life is like that.

Eating Dessert gif

Okay, I’ve babbled waaaay too much and am dying to hear your thoughts on all this. What is YOUR favorite part to write? Am I the only one who has the hardest time starting things out? Or maybe you love beginnings and endings daunt you more? TELL ME. Seriously, I’m insanely curious how everyone feels about this.


  1. OMG. You have Thorin and Stitch in one post. *flails with happiness* And yes, s'mores and ice cream sundaes, please!

    I actually had a clear idea of how to begin my WIP, as well as the ending. It was the middle that I found more daunting. I sort of knew some of the things I wanted to do, but other parts were like stumbling around in the dark. (That's probably why the word count ended up as high as it did for Draft #1. *gulps*)

    Looking back on the story, I'd say the final chapter (resolution) was the fastest one to write, even though it's not the shortest. It was a lot like what happened to you: My inner ninja woke up, and I couldn't stop typing! But the second-to-last chapter, where the climax happens, was my favorite chapter. It was fun to write a battle scene with action, magic, and a flying life-size Faerie; and finding a way for the protagonist to take what she learned earlier in the story and use that knowledge to save the day was incredibly fulfilling. :)

    Good luck as you finish Burning Thorns! Go go go, Christine!

    1. THORIN AND STITCH. YESH. *highfives*

      That's the funny thing about me, I actually usually know exactly how the story begins, but when I go to write it I have the hardest time. I think it's discovering my characters' voices and the feel of the story that gets me. Eventually I usually know my characters' thought-pattern as well as my own, but at first it takes some exploration.
      I do that in the middle, too! I have a beginning, I have an ending, and I may have some ideas for the middle, but the rest is anyone's guess. Then I end up blabbering about nothing for pages upon pages as I try to figure out the plot. Such a problem.

      YES. That happens to me a lot! The climax is the most fun, but the resolution may actually go the fastest. I don't even know why. But aren't climaxes just a blast? And yours sounds terrific! Action and magic and faeries? Yes, yes, yes!

      Thank you!!! That means so much to me. ^_^ Hopefully I shall survive...

  2. I'm the opposite! Beginnings are my favorite to write, and the easiest in my opinion. Maybe it's because I've written more story beginnings than anything else, lol! I have so many ideas that I've come up with so many beginnings(and had to write them down to see if I wanted to continue). But whether it's the beginning, middle, or end, writing your story can feel both pleasurable and daunting at different times.

    1. Also wanted to add...I've tagged you for something on my blog. http://thescribblingsprite.blogspot.com/2015/07/new-discoveries-tag-special-announcement.html

    2. I envy you! I wish beginnings came easy to me. I always look forward to them, but then struggle to get through those first chapters. But I understand that having a million ideas thing! So many ideas, so little time. Writer probs, right?

      You are SO right. Writing a story, no matter where you are in the progress, is both the funnest and most overwhelming thing in the world.

      Oh, a tag! Thank you!!! I'll check it out in just a bit here. :D

  3. I'm in a different boat, kind of. I too love writing endings, but I also love writing beginnings. It's the meat of the story that's the hard part for me. You know, rising action, making the characters grow and do stuff, et cetera. I think I just like coming up with scenes and scenarios more than I like coming up with actual plots. It's a problem. XD

    1. That's awesome you love both! I wish beginnings felt more fun to me, because I always look forward to them, then I'm just like, "This is HARD." Middles can be terribly hard though, most definitely! I guess it depends on what I'm writing at the time though. Because a lot of scenes I look really forward to, but then others I struggle through. But yes, that whole plot thing... *shakes head* One time I literally wrote a book with basically no plot, just the charries going around doing random things and having long conversations and pointless stuff. So ridiculous. Writing is just an emotional roller coaster, isn't it? XD

  4. This post was awesome! I love the idea of likening beginnings to appetizers, middles to the meal, and endings to desert! That is brilliant and I've never thought of it before but it works SO WELL! (I am also very hungry now. Thanks. XD)

    That's so exciting that you're getting into the ending and enjoying your writing again!! ^_^ *twirls happily* Endings can indeed be very interesting!

    I... honestly don't know what part I like best. *shifty Naidren eyes* I've only finished a very few things, so the very very LONG times between kind of make me forget how I feel when I do finish. :-/ That finishing moments is indeed thrilling, but it happens so rarely that... I don't know. Middles can be great for the reasons you mentioned! I apparently like endings because I'm always starting things and never finish and sometimes don't even get into the middle... *COUGH* BUT STILL. XD I think I'm just really bad at analyzing myself, so I'm afraid I don't know the answer to your question! o.o

    Good luck on the ending!!! You can do iiiiit! I'M SO EXCITED. :D

    1. Thank you! ^_^ I basically wrote it right before bed Tuesday night after being gone and busy all day, so I was worried it's just a bunch of nonsense. I don't even know. >.>

      I've seen others compare parts of books to an appetizers, meal, and dessert, so it wasn't my idea, but I like it, too! (And yeah, I was apparently hungry when I wrote this...)

      I LOVE endings!!! But...I guess you know that by now. Hehe. But yesh, it's fun and I's happy!

      Maybe you like ALL the writing? And you start a bunch of different things because your brain is magical and wonderful and comes up with the best ideas EVER and you muuust start them!!! ALL THE THINGS.

      THANK YOOUUUU!!!! I'm still not sure I'll finish it by the end of this month but I am so, so, so close. It's exciting! :D

    2. Noooo it wasn't nonsense, it was brilliant, and hilariousness! Seriously, how you so witty and fantastic?? ^_^


      Heheh, well it's either I like it all or I dislike it all, so yeah, we'd better go with liking. XD


      Also, I forgot to mention but the title sooo makes me think of Loki and the "I'll have that drink now" thing. XDDD Awesomesauce. :D

    3. You are so niiiice! <333

      Lol! I didn't even think about that Loki quote. I don't know what I was thinking when I titled this. Probably that I was hungry...

  5. Oh my goodness, can I please just say that this post is perfection?! I was laughing so hard at that Sponge Bob GIF . . . that is just so relatable. XD

    I am exactly. the. same. THIS POST PRETTY MUCH DESCRIBES MY FEELINGS ON WRITING A NOVEL/STORY *EXACTLY* OH MY GOODNESS. XD Beginnings and I - we're enemies. I can spend a whole half an hour on the first sentence. O_o It is so, so, so frustrating, and deters me from writing on occasion. -_-

    But then, the end. ajdkfsakd. GLORIOUS! :"D It just feels so exciting and it comes together fast and everything's going strong and - ah! Endings are what I write for! XD

    You are also hilarious! This is my first post of yours that I have read, but you shall be seeing me around her more often! :D Awesome post! All the best with your novel, by the way! :)

    Koko @ His Little Elephant

    1. D'awww! So sweet! I'm thrilled you enjoyed my silly little post so much! You've made my day. And isn't the Spongbob thing perfect? I ALWAYS think of writing when I see that episode. It's so me when I'm trying to write.

      YOU ARE?! Kindred spirit! :D *highfives* I'm so glad to find someone who understands. Aren't beginnings just the hardest? Good grief, I spend so long on them, and then usually erase the first paragraph and do it again...and maybe again. It's terrible.

      But endings, yes! They make the grueling work of writing SO worthwhile! Love 'em!

      Oh my goodness, I'm grinning so hard right now. Seriously, this just made my day. Thank you SO much!!! Hopefully my randomness and crazy posts won't scare you away. ;D

  6. Way to go for being so dedicated! You're positively flying through Burning Thorns! :D This ending sounds soooo good. I don't know if I'll survive the wait! *faints dramatically* XD

    You're so right, there is something special about endings. I'm not even sure which part of a story I like writing best, though. Maybe it changes from one to the next. I know I loved my Sleeping Beauty story's beginning (man, that thing NEEDS a title), but I can also think of so many awesomely fun middles and endings that I've written. Gah, so conflicted! XD But that description of yours about how everything builds and builds, leading up to that intense climax... klasdfjalksj. Makes me fall in love with endings all over again!

    And no, BT will not end like molasses. You--and it--will be amazing. Guaranteed. <3

    1. Apparently I forgot to add something that was actually swimming around the forefront of my mind:
      I totally get how hard it is to pick up your story at the beginning of something! Beginning of a scene, a chapter, the whole book--anything. That's why I try to end off my writing time in the middle of something, so that I have some momentum next time I write. :)

    2. Thank you!!! ^_^ This first draft has gone faster than a lot of my books. It excites me!
      And the ending...well. I made myself almost cry yesterday, and a little today, so make of that what you will. *grins evilly* Of course since you've read the novella you know the gist of the ending, things just go down a little differently this go round, but still more or less the same plotline.

      I so understand! I honestly enjoy most of the writing process, there are just some moments where I want to bash my head against the wall in hopes some form of inspiration will wake up in there. Being a writer is quite an adventure. XD

      You too? :O I knew we were brain twins! I seem to be on the minority of this, which I assumed would be the case. Most people do really well with beginnings, but I just can't seem to conquer them. I ALWAYS tell myself to try and stop writing in the middle, but I so often never do. Once I finish a scene/chapter I'm just like, "There! That's enough writing for the day." And then the next time I start writing I have the hardest time picking it back up. It's an endless problem that I'll probably never fix because I apparently like torturing myself. >.> I need to learn from you and be smart and more responsible!

    3. That IS exciting! You go, girl!
      Oh dear. My poor heart. What are you going to do to me?? Even knowing the general gist of things, I'm still getting nervous about what's so painful it's making you cry. D':

      Indeed! It's an adventure like no other. XD

      Brain twins again! Woot! Heheh, I do well with beginnings that DON'T MATTER. Or ones that don't matter yet. Like writing dares and random ideas--I can whip up a page or two pretty easily because I don't have any pressure on me to make all the beginning elements WORK. If I haven't a clue about what this object and that character and this line of dialogue even means, who cares? It sounds mysterious! XD
      I struggle with that too at times. It's so satisfying to stop at the end of something. My natural inclination is that, "Oh, this is a good time to walk away." NOT. XD Maybe with continued practice, though, picking up beginnings will get easier for you (and me). :)

    4. *cackles* You'll seeeee. <8D

      That's for sure!

      Oh, that's a good point! I pretty much never do flash fiction and things (though I'd really like to do more), but when I do it IS so much easier to just jump into an exciting beginning since you don't have to worry about characters and world building and explaining everything that's going on. You're so right!
      What a positive way of looking at it! My irresponsibility is just giving me practice to write better beginnings. XD Okay, probably not... I so fail at beginnings. But I'm going to just tell myself that's what I'm doing when I stop writing at the end of a scene to make myself feel better anyway. Hehe.


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