Nancy's Books

Sunday, April 30, 2017

First Draft, part 2

I’m making progress on my manuscript. In fact, the first draft stands on its own in black and white. Or does it? When I wrote The end, which are the two words I always delete prior to submission, Inner Critic decided the ending doesn’t work because it needs some surprise or twist. At this point I don’t have it. That means unless I can devise some clever ending, publication simply is not going to happen. (Inner Critic’s usual negative chatter shouts loud and clear.)

No magic formula exists for writing a manuscript that will capture an editor’s “ear,” but picture books have guidelines. Endings are especially difficult because they have to tie up loose ends and create a satisfying ending. If the reader figures out from the beginning how the ending will unfold, the enchantment of the storytelling is lost.
What I need at this moment is a story-ending machine. I feed it my beginning and middle and Kazam! out pops the effective, sustaining ending. Unfortunately, the big box stores don’t carry this product. Outta luck.
I’m playing with different endings. Something unexpected that surprises readers, or humors them, or leave them with a warm feeling of contentment, or a cliffhanger, a situation in which the ending is left to the interpretation of the reader.  (Thanks, Muse, for these ideas.)
Which will it be? By next week, I’ll know (I hope. Shhhhh, Inner Critic!) and fill you in on the process.
Call for Submissions for Adult Writers

Empty Sink Publishing is looking for professional-quality fiction and creative non-fiction submissions that stretch the mind, defy convention, and offer a new perspective on life.  


Nancy Kelly Allen has written 40+ children’s books and a cookbook, SPIRIT OF KENTUCKY: BOURBON COOKBOOK. Check out her blog at www.nancykellyallen.com

1 comment:

  1. Let me know if you find one of those "ending" machines. I could use it, too! lol

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