Beginnings hook readers. Endings create fans.
The other night when talking about readers with a writer friend, she interrupted to comment that she did not believe many writers consider their ultimate readers when writing a story. She went on to say that most writers she knows spend most of their time perfecting the beginning and usually peter out at the end.
The next day I received an email from a mighty disappointed agent friend who had just finished a 400 page manuscript she was SO hopeful for and realized "in the last 60 pages or so there must be a book in there, somewhere," but not in the shape she needs it to be.
How many of you do endings well? Not just with your stories but in other aspects of your life, too. Ending a relationship. The end of a visit. The end of any phase. Often, we just let things peter out...
All that to say, a friend and prolific writer, Penny Warner, has a terrific blog post about beginnings. Check it out. (NOTE: I just realized all the mystery writers who make up The Lady Killers are blogging about beginning. Penny's post is on May 12th)