End of Book Blues (again)

Help! Buddy stories – recommendations needed!


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Paul Whybrow

Full Member
Jun 20, 2015
Cornwall, UK
I've previously lamented about the feelings of sadness I experience when finishing the writing of a story

I'm just completing the second novella about a traumatised American Civil War cavalry officer, who's trying to make his way in the hurly-burly Era of Reconstruction after the war. I enjoyed revisiting him, as I've been wondering what he was doing: characters really do take on a life of their own. :rolleyes:

I'm next going to make a start on the fifth novel in my Cornish Detective series, which means altering my mindset from paranoid 19th-century combat veteran to that of a 21st-century rural detective who approaches investigations in a meditative way via painting, reading and riding his unfeasibly large chopper motorcycle. I share characteristics with them, of course, and find that my fictional protagonist's experiences and attitudes both mirror and contradict my own.

The new investigation for my Detective Chief Inspector will rattle his preconceptions about the 'niceness' of creative artists by revealing how ruthless painters and art dealers can be. In the last six months, I've been doing a lot of reading about art forgery, Nazi and Russian army thefts of art in WW2 and the struggles to get items returned, as well as the poverty of many painters that are exploited by investors. Dying can be a great career move for an artist and not all depart this life voluntarily, as my copper finds.

I'm looking forward to returning to DCI Neil Kettle's world, though I'm tempted to resurrect a couple of other characters I previously wrote about, as well as create brand new characters who only exist as ghosts in outlines for future stories. It almost feels like I'm surrounded by a sea of hands, voices calling "Write about me, write about me."

So many stories to tell—so little time to do so—I got dem end of book blues again.

Do any of you share my angst?

I'm at the other end of the spectrum - end of book euphoria.

A. I did it!!! I finished!!!

B. Now I can start writing that idea that's been floating around in my head
Why were you ecstatic to finish your novel, Patricia? Was it a tricky story to write or did the editing tax your patience? Finishing any story or poem always gives me a sense of achievement, while wondering what its fate will be.

Last night, I finally decided that my latest novella is done and dusted, after two solid weeks of editing. I was beginning to remind myself of the opposite of a big-game hunter. You know how a hunter will throw rocks at the body of a dangerous predator, poking it with a long stick before going near, to ensure that it's really dead and not faking it? Well, I kept returning to my manuscript to give it a poke to see if it came to life as a story!

It does, so I'm moving on to my next project, the fifth novel in my Cornish Detective series. Good luck with your new story.
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Help! Buddy stories – recommendations needed!