This morning, I would finish my novel. The night before, I had written the penultimate chapter to what would be what I considered my best work. The climax finished, I needed only wrap up the story in a few hundred words. I went to bed early, anticipating waking early for work the next morning. When I woke too early, I lay in bed thinking exactly how the story would end. Not that it would end, because no story truly ever ends, but where would I stop following these wonderful people, recording them through the lens of fiction?
This morning, I thought. It would have to be this morning. College looms, and maybe if I don’t finish soon, I may never finish, never decide on a conclusion. Even if it isn’t any good, even if I have to change it, at least something will be written. I will feel that much closer to being finished.
And maybe finishing In Lickskillet makes me feel finished with high school. Even though I graduated back in June, I’ve still been navigating the social maze of high school within the walls of fiction. Sure, my time at school gave a lot of good source material and inspiration for the novel, but I think I’m ready to finally leave that stage of my life.
But ain’t that the truth? Everything ends.
Every novel has an ending, just like every part of your life does. In my opinion, it doesn’t really flow that smoothly– there are definite
times when you might think a chapter number would be suitable. Like right now, before I leave for college, I’m ending a chapter, a huge chapter. All about high school and the city of Aiken and the immense impact it has had on me. Most of the characters will bow off stage, maybe not be seen but for cameos. All the history I’ve learned here, I’ll have to learn new history elsewhere. I am cutting off ties, leaving both jobs, and moving onto to bigger things.
Next Friday, I move into a college dorm, and then a new chapter will begin. Maybe I’ll find some new photography studio to work at or a new hip magazine to write for. Maybe not.
New things will come. For example, I’ll start my time in the International Scholars Program at the College of Charleston, which is brand new and is sure to be a wild, enlightening time.
This blog was recently freshly pressed, so maybe there is new life in that. Just because some readers from Aiken might stop reading, I may gain more readers, other readers, both from Charleston and all around the world.
But this morning, I had the satisfying feeling of typing THE END to a novel I feel may be my first major published work. Everything ends, and right now, what’s ending is maybe that part of my career when I’m still working to be a success, still doing little things that might one day add up to big things.
The next chapter?
Well, Hell, who knows what might happen?