Sunday, March 6, 2011

sucker for a happy ending

The other day I started my fourth novel.  I'm pretty excited because the idea for the plot has been ricocheting around my head and finally came to rest in one place long enough for me to pin it down with words.  The first few chapters came followed by the rest of the plot with me holding on for dear life hoping I could write it all down in time!  Its a new thing for me, writing the entire plot out first, but I think it's helped in keeping my writing more cohesive.  If I know where I'm going, I know how to get there (hopefully).

When I wrapped up the ending I got to thinking how cliche it was.  But, upon further reflection, I realized I liked cliche.  Ok, in all honesty I don't like it to the point where you can guess, nearly word for word, what the plot will be and by the second chapter you have the book wrapped up in a pretty bow of understanding. That is just boring.  I thought over the many books I'd read recently and summed them up in my mind, bringing them to reckoning.

Of each of them I asked, "Plot, what makes you so good?"

The answer came in the form of a happy ending.  I love a happy ending.  Sure - give me trial, give me temptation, give me pain and hurt, but you'd better give me a happy ending to look forward to.  I know this is not true for everyone.  Some enjoy pain and strife.  The muck of life.  But I've come to terms with the fact that I write not to say something that's never been said before in a profound way, but instead to remind my readers that God's way is best with a more simplistic representation.  Hum, maybe simplistic is not the right word, but what I mean is that I'm not writing from a platform.  I'm writing from a place in our minds and hearts that desires love and happiness and, in this way, pointing to the fact that God is the only True Giver of these things.

Sounds like a lofty goal, I know.  I'm not saying that I have achieved that or even hope to in this lifetime, but it is my goal nonetheless.  I want nothing more than to point to the Lord in my writing.  In the case of this book, my theme is the fact that God works everything (even the most random, painful details) together for His good.  It sounds simplistic but yet is so much more difficult to show than you'd initially think.  Yes, the plot may be something you could guess at, but I hope (and pray) in the end it comes to a conclusion that, though expected, satisfies.  And in that satisfaction, I hope that it points to God.

------
On a side note, I'm currently inspired by Beautiful Things by Gungor.  AMAZING!