I’ve already talked about this here (if you’ve been to that world, thank you very much 🙂 ) but I would like to revisit that.
After having finished one project which may have kind of failed I realized how important the last line of the story is. Also, through reading many, many books some single, non-series ones made me want more but then, my heart sinks when I realize they are not going to be continued.
That shows an ending not fit for a non-series.
So, without further ado, here are some ending types I have seen or even done.
I named them mah-self 😛
1. Don’t Worry Be Happy Ending
The entire book is about a turmoil, a tension, troubles, all the negative (but good for reading) Ts. After all this bitter tea, there’s a resolution. Oh, sugar sugar! *sings*
Characters are now at a peaceful point in their troublesome lives.
But, the troubles are not completely over. They’re still there. Just a lot more manageable now.
And tomorrow is another day but a peaceful one.
Don’t worry anymore.
Be happy now.
Everything is going to be fine 🙂
A good example is
Labyrinth by Kate Mosse
which I adore. For teens and up.
2. Happily Ever After Ending
This is different from the Don’t Worry Be Happy Ending.
The Happily Ever After Ending is a fairy tale ending. There are ZERO things to worry about. Everything is fine and peachy.
They all lived happily ever after.
A good example is, of course, fairy tales but also,
Enna Burning by Shannon Hale
Shannon Hale is my writing inspiration. Check her YA novels out 🙂
3. This Is A Series! Ending
These are the endings that end in such a way you know it’s a series.
There are still so many unanswered questions! You still have no clue if the characters are going to fight or love each other or what!
And some mysterious being that lurks in the shadows, still lurks.
A good example of This Is A Series! Ending is,
Warriors: Into the Wild by Erin Hunter
“Fireheart was ready for the challenge.”
This is the ending line. The ending!
Obviously, a mega-series.
I tried to end my first finished project in this way. Too many questions left unanswered so there must be a sequel! kind of ending
Related article: Types of Book Sequels – Pros & Cons
4. Leave You Wondering But MC is Happy Ending
There are still questions to be asked. There are still some things readers are left to speculate about. But the MC (main character) has accomplished their goals, arrived where they wanted to arrive, and is happy now.
The best example that I know of is
Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
An awesome read, for teens and up. You’d enjoy it if you like gritty drama, mystery, romance, a circus train, and elephants.
Starting with a 90-something old man in an old people’s home, we see bit by bit the life of this old man in his youth as he remembers how he ended up in the elderly care home. Years ago, he had hopped onto a train which happened to be a circus train and ended up working there. No one opposes the boss of the circus who has serious mood swings, until they buy an elephant from a fallen circus.
The ending, which I won’t disclose in detail, is a “Leave You Wondering but MC is Happy Ending”. There were still some questions left but I was satisfied with the ending because the MC is finally where he wants to be 🙂
So, those are all the types of endings I’ve seen so far.
Occasionally, I see This Is A Series! Ending used for books that aren’t a series. That shows you some authors struggled and used the wrong ending. But as a writer, endings can be a struggle sometimes. You need to know way in advance which type of ending you’re going for to write a suitable story leading up to that ending.
Otherwise you’re left with too many unanswered questions for the ending to be a Don’t Worry Be Happy Ending.
Sometimes it’s a delicate balance.