So you’ve reached the end of the story. I’m imagining that you’re tired and possibly fresh out of inspiration. Cues Beyonce…Imagine me kicking my leg up, Tina Turner style and doing my best rendition of Proud Mary but to the sounds of Beyonce of course! Listen, there is nothing that I love more than a juicy ending. If the ending is unexpected, that’s even better. Your readers should put your book down, filled with such a range of emotions that they can hardly catch their breath. Some believe that the beginning of the book is a way to hook the reader and I couldn’t agree more. It is also my belief that the ending is what makes them want more.
Almost a year ago, my publishing company 13th & Joan, released a book titled “Lies Men Tell“. Now the book itself was dare I say “tea that spilleth over” but BABY, the ending was what took the readers to a place that they had no intentions of going. The ending was so good that people were upset with the author for not writing the second book as a follow up immediately. Little tied they know that it was all a part of our well orchestrated plan to draw the readers in and build her readership. She was a new author who subscribed to our policy or one reader at a time. I teach every author that I work with that attracting new readers is a marathon, not a sprint. Either way, it all begins with a good read.
As a Celebrity Ghostwriter, I keep my writing skills sharp at all times. Experimenting with a plethora of dynamics for books and elements for stories, allows me to keep the creative juices flowing. I’ve decided to share three of the ways that these endings have been snatching wigs worldwide.
- Morph the reader into a character.
If you’ve been writing for a specific audience (if you are one of my Author Coaching clients, this is not optional), you already know your reader and their needs and wants and desires. You know what moves them and all of the ebs and flows of their thoughts. This information is power. It is also your permission to make them see themselves inside of the story. In the conclusion, showing the reader how the things that have happened in their lives make them more like the main character(s) than they realized. Add some twists and turns that demonstrate that whatever the character has been through, we are all simply one step away from it. Give the character a sense of reliability that might have been gleaned in the earlier chapters. This is the one to bring it home.
2. Calling all hearts.
The conclusion of the book is also a time to appeal to the reader’s emotions for help. Make them feel responsible for doing something as a result of having read the book. I refer to it as the “Call to Action”. No matter the genre, it is my belief that readers benefit from being given a hidden set of directions that resonates in their hearts. They can walk away with a sense of purpose from having engaged with the written piece. How cool is that!
3. Full Circle
This tried and true technique can always post big points. If you’ve done an amazing job of taking the reader along for a ride throughout the book, the ending is the perfect time to simply come home. The trick is the give home a little twist. The main character(s) are not returning home the same way that they left. Whatever has happened to them in the story, is a clear indication that there are now more layers and that their perspective has shifted or evolved. Their view of wherever they are returning to must follow suit. It is a great way to conclude coming of age tales, which I absolutely love.
Many writers are exhausted by the time that they reach the end of the book and rightfully so. Writing a book should be just as much of an experience for the writer as it is for the reader. Even so, this is not the time to slack off. The conclusion is the time to kick your creativity into high gear. No matter how you decide to end your book, you have one job, SNATCH THE READER’S WIG!
Telling the Stories of Our Souls,
Ardre|Orie, CEO at 13th & Joan Publishing