Attached

Published July 24, 2015 by Jess Arwen

The July Camp NaNoWriMo is drawing to a close, and I have learned more than I imagined I would.  Learning about the writing process was to be expected: what works for a full-length novel, what fills up more space, how much planning is necessary.  Attachment to characters, however, was not expected.

Whenever I reach about seventy-five percent of the way through reading a book, I begin to mourn the impending end.  It does not matter how the story ends, but rather that it has to end at all.  To avoid the inevitable, I stop reading for about a week before the need to know what happens drives me to the conclusion.  Who knew that the same would be true of writing?  While I have not stopped writing, I sit here mourning the impending end.  As the author, I already know how it ends, but I don’t want it to.  To date, I haven’t written anything of great length, like a novel.  Thus, the time spent creating the characters and their world has made us friends, closer, perhaps, than some of my real life friends.

The words on the page right now are merely a first draft, but this heartens me no more than thinking I could simply keep writing, avoiding the end at all costs.  No, a story must end, but I never knew it would be so hard.  Do any of you other fiction writers have this problem?  How do you cope with it?

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2 comments on “Attached

  • One word: Sequels. 🙂 Also, for me at least I have the comfort 75% of the way through a book, I will still be able to return to these characters again and again through innumerable rewrites and revisions.

    But, of course, you are right. All good things must come to an end. Truman Capote once said: “Finishing a book is like you took a child out in the backyard and shot it.” Yes, leaving your characters behind is awful. But in the end, that unexplainable connection that you obviously have with your characters is what makes you a great writer.

    Also, I can’t help but feel that my characters get resurrected in the next book, even if it is not a sequel. If you will indulge me in another famous-writer-quote, I give you Gore Vidal: “Each writer is born with a repertory company in his head…As you get older, you become more skillful at casting them.”

    Thanks for the post!

    • Yes, thank you for these quotes and the comforting words. It’s nice to know that I’m not the only one who feels this way too. I guess I’ll just have to keep writing novels now! Thanks for reading. 🙂

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