Happy Endings



Hello my friends! Welcome back to yet another post!

Happy endings is something I think all of us want. Happily ever after, success, reaching those goals we’ve been striving for. I personally want a happy ending.

What about in writing? It’s the never ending debate in books and movies and stories. The outcome of the people and characters we’ve come to know and relate to and love. In the shoes of an author it’s something we have to always consider and think about. I read a quote, though I don’t remember where it was anymore. It went like this: “An event your character can walk away from is a book your reader will walk away from.”

We want our stories to effect our character and our readers in a deeper way than just as entertainment. We want our characters to learn something from what they went through. We want the story to tug at the heartstrings of our readers. When I write I want some day in the future for my reader to smile wistfully for a moment and remember that one book they read about a girl named Rose. I want them to wish they could remember the name so they could read it again.

What though, does this mean our stories can’t have happy endings? Does a cliche ending, something we can guess, make the story bad? I was debating this but guys, I came to this conclusion. We need happy endings. There’s other ways to make a story good without leaving the character destroyed at the end.

Life itself isn’t always it’s kindest to us and when we read, we want to feel, but we want it to leave us happy, or satisfied when we close the book at the words “The End.” When I read a book, I’m alright if a close family member of the main character dies during the course of the book. I’m ok if there is severe world issues, if it’s a dystopia, I’m alright if the entire system crumbles. What I want is the character to come away stronger, better, wiser, more able to love, a new point in life or a new focus for their energy. I want to come away at the end knowing that the character that I just spent the last hour with will be ok. That they will be better because of what happened.

You know why? Because we go through so much in life. There are already so many seemingly unhappy endings in the world. Cruel influences and tragic happenings. If we can find those events to relate to in a book we connect, but we also want to know that we can do this. There is a reason for what’s going on. We’re strong enough. We have purpose. We are not drifting along for nothing. We can make a difference, get through this, help someone, find love, live with reason.

As a Christian author myself, I do my best to put purpose into everything that happens in my book because I want my readers to know that guys, God has something He’s doing, even if we don’t understand just now. When we read books we’re more able to see the big picture that the main character might not see. That helps us understand that there is Someone bigger than us that’s taking care of everything. Everything is happening for a reason.

So maybe that’s it. Maybe we don’t always need happy endings in books. But we need one thread in all books we read. Hope. When I read a book and come away feeling hopeful, I know that that was a good book.

At the end of a book that I’m currently re-reading, I’ve remembered that at the end the main character dies. Completely. No coming back. But I loved this book to bits and I’m reading it again. Why? Because Hope. Thomas shut his eyes and dreamed, and the hope that ran through his veins, and the hope that we knew that there was more. There was life. Everything was going to be ok even as the blood was drained from his body.

Everything is going to be ok.

It may not be the happiest possible ending, but when we’re empowered to believe that everything will be ok because it will, then that is a good book.

Dear girls, everything will be ok.
Don’t feel bad making a happy ending in your story. There is no shame in a happy ending. πŸ˜€ After all, we have the happiest ending waiting for us, no?

~Libby

8 thoughts on “Happy Endings”

  1. Penny Wood says:

    This is very true indeed! Lots of people scorn happy endings, tbh. I’m still a huge supporter behind them.
    I saw a Tumblr post that said, “No matter what I put my characters through, they have to make it. I can torture and tear them apart, but they have to make it. They have to be okay.”
    And I was like, “BOOM! THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT!”
    And it made me think of this post. Coz it’s okay to have happy endings. Loved what you said, coz were going to have the happiest ending ever! πŸ˜€

  2. Kassie says:

    You nailed it!! One thing I always pray my readers take away from my books is β€œthey lived stronger ever after.” Even when terrible things have happened and it seems like the world won’t be β€œhappy” again, leastways not like it was, with God on our side the ending will never be hopeless. I have to have an ending tied up in bows, even with pain and struggle!!

    1. Libby May says:

      Yaasssss *fistbump* lets change the world.

  3. Merie Shen says:

    This is great, Libby! … As usual. But hey, happy endings are a very relevant topic to writers of all kind. πŸ™‚

  4. Emily says:

    *nods* Yeah, I’m writing a book right now where for the plot to move forward, eight out of the ten ‘main characters’ (I use that term lightly, because most of them aren’t the main ones, but they’re more main than a lot of the characters in the book) have to die. My MC is going to be a lot stronger than she was at first, but she’s also going to deal with a ton of heartbreak. (I’m actually in the middle of a scene right now where she’s having a lot of fun with the entire group. Within five hours of that time the first person is dead…)
    Yeah, so that’s my ramblings XD. Basically, I’ve been reading a lot of articles lately on how to make the ending satisfying for the readers while still tragic and heartbreaking. This article was really helpful!

    Emily || growingintofriends.com

  5. Lilly W says:

    Love the new looks Libby!

  6. Paige says:

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! Your blog looks great! πŸ˜€
    This was an interesting post; I like your outlook of hope in story-telling. It is consistent with our Christian worldview.

  7. Rosy Marr says:

    AWESOME post, and so true! πŸ˜€ <3 Love this! <3

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