fiction | Inspiration | NaNoWriMo | writing

Happy Endings

I’ve been writing again. The ever-amazing Anna Spargo-Ryan has kicked my butt into gear via our NaNoWriMo writing group on Facebook, inviting us to be accountable to each other and aim for 500 words a day for each day in June. It’s worked.

I find I need accountability, not only for the pats on the back but for the support when something doesn’t quite go to plan. Having a deadline gives me a goal, forces me to put on my blinkers and focus. I’ve always been the same. Something to do with my inner control-freak combined with my obsessive compulsive nature I guess.

As I am well into the heart of my novel I’m finding myself thinking about the ending. I’ve mentioned before I’m not really good at pulling on my write-by-feel pansters; I’m more of a planner. But stories sometimes seem to have a life of their own and take directions that weren’t on the whiteboard and this is where I find myself.

Initially my story was never intended to have a happy ending. I’m not one for happy endings. Take Pretty Woman for example. I would have been one of the ones applauding at the original ending where Julia and Richard go their separate ways. The knight rescuing the princess from the tower is all a bit too clich√© for me.

But as I write, as I wade my way through the tornado of emotion that my book entails, I find myself longing for a happy ending. Not that the ending would be happy for all, but for the main characters it would soothe their souls. I feel they almost deserve it after the shattering emotions I’ve put them through. Dragging them around, picking them up off the floor and spitting them back out again. They need it. And perhaps I wonder, the reader will need it too. Something to smile about, something to hope for, as we all do in our own lives.

But then again, I’m torn. Life isn’t a fairy tale and happy endings are rarely happy endings…unless you’re Julia Roberts of course.

For now I’ll just keep writing. Spewing my words (at least 500 a day thank you Anna) out onto the screen and maybe just see where they lead me.


Do you like happy endings?
What’s your favourite ending to a book or film?