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An Acceptable Ending?

Discussion in 'Writing Discussions' started by Amanita, Nov 18, 2012.

  1. Amanita

    Amanita Maester

    Hello everyone,

    thanks to NaNo I'm actually reaching a point where the thing mentioned in the title is becoming a true concern. ;)
    I'm going to have to divide the story I'm writing into more than one book, not sure if it's going to be two or three. General advices goes that the first book of a series should be able to stand on its own however, and I'd like to have it that way for various reasons. (The tone is changing quite a bit afterwards and a new main character is joining the cast.)
    Therefore I'd like to know if the following would cound as a proper ending for a stand-alone novel. The main character, a seventeen-year old girl finds out that a disaster widely believed to have been an accident was actually a terrorist attack, she also remembers the faces of the people responsible. Main character wants to see them punished, doesn't get support and travels to another country to get it. There, she's told that she has magical powers and has to accept them and learn to use them which is rather difficult.
    While busy with that, she sees a news report and realises that the woman leading a revolution in a neighboring country is the terrorist responsible for the disaster and tells other people so, without much reaction at first.
    During her magic training, strange things are happening someone's trying to kill her. At first, she thinks this is normal for the people she's working with, but during the course of the story, she's realising that this is not the case.
    After a showdown, the person responsible for this is caught and put into prison and the main character talks to her teachers about the villainess once again. They admit that they believe the main character as far as the woman's guilt is concerned but that they can't do anything about it because that would mean starting a war with the allied country she's ruling by now. Her behavior as a politician is not such that it would justify such an action and therefore they have to accept it. They also believe that she has changed and the main character has to accept the lack of justice for the sake of the "greater good" aka avoiding a war that would kill many more people.
    Could you accept such an ending?

    (Later it becomes obvious that these people ruling the neighboring country is a real problem and that something has to be done about it, but that's the contents of the later book(s) The killer has actually been working for the villainess but they don't realise this at the end of the first book yet.)
  2. wordwalker

    wordwalker Auror

    It seems like a valid ending, though going from the summary, "the neighboring rulers are a problem" already seem obvious if the hunt for the assassin gets stopped cold by those politics.

    But the story seems set up to make us always remember the "revolutionary" as a ruthless terrorist, the way we first got to know her, so any forgiving or tiptoing around her would be hard to swallow. That sounds like it would make this ending seem like a call to arms to fix the larger problems, not as stand-alone as it might be, but not really a bad pause.
  3. psychotick

    psychotick Auror


    I think you need to make it more explicit that the battle is over but not the war. But that there is a lull in which your MC will continue training? etc, but always be ready for the next stage in the battle. You need to get your MC to a point where her story arc is ended if only for a time. After all in Star Wars (the first trilogy filemed), the battle was over after the first flick, but the war would continue, and Luke would continue his training. Same sort of thing I think.

    Cheers, Greg.

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