blog, writing process

Getting to The End


So, I’m a confirmed pantser who usually comes up with the end of the story about 60% of the way in and then I write my way towards it. And if I get stuck, I try a little light outlining, which can help but feels a bit forced, for me.

Right now, I am 80% of the way through a short story. I have the ending, even the last sentence. Yet every word is a struggle, even though I know where I’m going. I have tried leaving it and returning to try again. The story is promised for an anthology that my writers’ group is publishing, there is a deadline, and I want it finished because I have other things to do. I need to move on.

I am struggling to reach the finish line.

Still like the story, still have something to say, still can’t get there. Why this resistance? I am reminded of this quote by Ernest Hemingway:

“Sometimes (writing) comes easily and perfectly; other times it’s like drilling rock and then blasting it out with charges.”

The only thing I know is to keep going, one word at a time, wrestling my meaning from an uncooperative keyboard the hard way. The muse is not making this one easy for me, but success will be the sweeter, I think (hope). I resist the urge to switch into editing mode, for that will surely kill my little flame of inspiration. Sentences flow like treacle in the snow.

Why is this so hard? Looking for reasons, all I can come up with is that I’m writing in first person, always a challenge for me. But the protagonist will not survive.

Perhaps he has more to say than I thought; it is the story itself that does not want to end.

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