I saw a movie this week. Actually, I saw three, but two were on HBO.
The one I went to see at the cineplex disappointed me. Why?
Too many freakin' loose ends.
I spent 30 minutes after the movie was over wondering WTF had happened to several subplots. They seemed to have been forgotten by the screenwriter/director/producers/actors. The audience, however, noticed a couple things were MIA.
How many times has this happened after you've finished reading a book?
How about after you finish writing one?
I've been fortunate enough to read books that tie up a lot of loose ends. As for writing them? Not so much. But I don't call it quits until I wrap everything up. That's when I feel like I'm actually talented--when things are all over the place and I get to organize them. I usually go about it in sections, depending on the significance of the subplot. Little ones go first, then the big kahunas get my full attention later on. After I've finished, I read the whole manuscript again to see if I missed something. If I didn't, I sing all of Madonna's hits around a campfire while playing the ukulele.
Well... That doesn't really happen, but you get the picture...
Here's the deal: you can make the MC lovable, the antagonist swoonworthy, and the plot action-packed, but that pesky brat of a denouement will keep honking your horn until every plot hole's been covered. Oh, the joys of writing...
So tell me, what's your game plan when that loose end keeps screaming 'Tie me up, baby!'?