I’ve been writing professionally in some form for over 15 years now. I’ve gotten pretty good when people suggest I make necessary changes to something I wrote that I might not want to do.
For example, my debut has had three titles. I never once complained when my agent then my publisher wanted to change it. I just went with it like, “You want to change the title…”
Another example was my agent suggested I take out what is probably my favorite line in the book. Day’s trying to get some extra money by selling her clothes on consignment. The exchange:
“Are they clean?”
I nodded. They were Febrezed. Close enough.
Me when I first wrote it and also me when I just read it again:
But still. I took it out. (I actually don’t think my agent even knew it was my favorite line ever in the history of the world because I never complained about the suggestion. I just did it.)
However, there is one thing that I refuse to change. And that’s the last word of my book. I’ve known what it would be since before I even wrote the thing. I’ve actually had a couple people suggest I change it to something else. And they’ve gotten this response:
It’s literally just one word. And I’m going to be that annoying person who isn’t going to say what it is. You’re going to have to buy the book on (shameless plug) August 8 to read it yourself. Or if you’re like me, buy the book on (shameless plug number 2) August 8 and immediately flip to the end.
However, I do think it’s a really awesome ending to the book for a few reasons:
1.) It sets up a bit of a cliffhanger.
2.) It sums up Day’s emotions in just one word and the severity of how she’s feeling.
3.) Day and I are pretty similar. She would also find that Febreze line to be way funnier than it actually is. However, we differ in one key way. And that difference is a constant struggle for me to write. So the ending is my lone shout-out to me writing how I would handle the situation.
So that’s why it stayed! Perhaps it doesn’t accomplish all three of these things. You’ll have to decide for yourself on (shameless plus number 3) August 8.
Readers, do you have any book endings or lines that you particularly love? Share them in the comments!