7 Steps To Celebrate ‘The End’ 

7 Steps To Celebrate ‘The End’ 

In this post, we’re looking at what to do to celebrate writing the end of your story.

‘The End’ – to any writer, those words at the end of a novel are truly magical. After countless writing sessions, they’ve overcome so many obstacles. They’ve poured their hearts out, beat that procrastination dragon, typed, researched, and typed some more. And usually, writers do it all on their own.

Not only is the story at its end, but often the writer is, too. It is high time to celebrate and recharge!

7 Steps To Celebrate ‘The End’

 

1. Acknowledge The Milestone

Writing a novel is a tremendous effort, and the experience is both intellectual and physical.

A novel usually involves up to 80.000 words. If you are anything like me, you can type about 1000 in one hour (we’re talking first draft!). That makes it at least 80 hours of consecutive writing (without sleep or food). Nobody can do that. NaNoWriMo calculates that you can write a novel in one month – and that is still an incredible effort. It is too tough for me. Our colleagues from Deadlines For Writers do it in one year, which is more realistic.

So, let’s say you took a year to write these 80.000 words. Wow! Well done! You’ve shown much determination, diligence, and perseverance. Not many people can do what you’ve accomplished. Now is the time to pat yourself on the back for sticking to this project for so long.

2. Time To Celebrate!

The time you invested in your writing is the time you didn’t have for many other things: family, friends, and hobbies. Take stock of all the things you missed out on. Then go out with your loved ones, have a drink, and dance around your desk!

At this point, nobody knows if your book turns out a bestseller, or if it’ll make you rich and famous. This kind of validation might take a while. So, it’s important to make yourself a small present. Splurge a little. Buy something that’s a treat, not a necessity.

Create a souvenir of that period of writing. You might make a collage of the photos you’ve used for inspiration. How about turning the first page ever written for this project into a work of art? You could put it into a fancy frame and hang it up on the wall. You created it, and that alone makes it beautiful.

3. Share Your Success

Call your friends to tell them what you’ve accomplished. Share the good news on social media. Ask your writing group to celebrate with you.

Why should you do that? Because accountability is important in the writing process. It was essential for you to get the project done. It now is vital for the people who held you accountable to hear about your success. Please remember: these people were rooting for you as you went along. Now it’s time to show them the result. It’s a way to say thank you.

Don’t forget to tell your family. They need to know why you’ve been so busy, and why you’ve missed out on so many family dinners. Your family has reason to be proud of you: many novelists write while keeping a day job. That’s working double shifts!

4. Recharge Your Batteries

One year of writing is quite an experience for the mind and soul, but also demanding on the body, especially on your eyes and your back. When you sit at your desk, deeply concentrated on your story, hacking away, you tend to cramp up in that position. The result is often pain in the shoulders, the neck, and the back (sound familiar? Here are some tips on how to avoid that). Now is the perfect time to finally get that massage, do some sports, or just plain go for a walk in nature. Listen to the needs of your body and heed that call.

Don’t forget to recharge mentally as well. When did you last read someone else’s book? As a writer, you need to put other writers’ ideas into your brain, so that you can come up with writing ideas of your own.

You might also enjoy a change of scenery. Maybe visit a place that is the opposite of your novel’s setting. If you wrote about a farm, how about a trip to a bustling metropolis?

5. Take Stock

After reward and recharge, you need to look at the process of writing again. How can you make it better, smoother, and easier? How can you learn from this project?

Obstacles and hardships can be external or internal. Ask yourself these questions:

How did you come up with the time, space, and money needed for this project?

How did you overcome procrastination or writer’s block?

Where did you find inspiration?

What have you learned about yourself in the process? Do you prefer to write in the morning or the evening? Alone or with a group?

Now think about how you can transfer these lessons to other projects.

6. Plot Your Next Move

The journey of your book is not yet finished (sorry!). Writing ‘The End’ is a great feat, but you need to invest a just little more before your book is ready to become a bestseller.

How much rewriting is necessary? Have you edited your book? Who will proofread it? Once the final draft is finished, you need to write a synopsis, and pitch your story to agents and publishing houses. After all, how should the world know about your fantastic book unless you tell everyone about it?

7. Play again!

Confess: you also had that shiny new idea barging into your thoughts when you were engaged in that long middle section, right? It’s when the going gets tough in any novel. It’s when we all need to pluck up all the perseverance we can.

When this new story idea pops up inside our brains, it is so tempting to pursue that instead of finishing the story at hand. I know you managed to push this idea away to the back of your mind. Otherwise, you wouldn’t have finished this book.

Now, however, is the time to look at this shiny idea once again. Does it have what it takes to become your next big project? What about other new ideas? Are you ready to play again? Oh, I hope so! 

The Last Word

Even if you didn’t write a novel, even if you wrote ‘just’ a short story, it is equally important to celebrate ‘The End.’ Why? Because it brings closure.

Any artistic work involves emotion, personal experience, and hardship to finish. Acknowledge the process to truly appreciate the result. Only then will you find closure. As with all ends, closure can bring the beginning of something new and wonderful: your next writing project.

Happy writing!

Susanne Bennett

By Susanne Bennett.

Susanne  is a German-American writer who is a journalist by trade and a writer by heart. After years of working at German public radio and an online news portal, she has decided to accept challenges by Deadlines for Writers. Currently she is writing her first novel with them. She is known for overweight purses and carrying a novel everywhere. Follow her on Facebook.

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Posted on: 14th November 2022
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