…Especially for a writer, are easily these.
The words The End represent hours, days, weeks, months, even years of work that have been leading up to that moment. Most people don’t even reach them half the time. But to get there is one of the best feelings in the world. You’ve accomplished your goal. You’ve finished that draft! It’s a great achievement to even get to that stage.
But once you’ve eaten your celebratory chocolate and given yourself a well deserved break, reality begins to set in.
What happens next?
It’s an intimidating thought. All the work you’ve done, all the things you’ve planned up until this moment are finished. Everything is ticked off your to do list. Sure, you have one or two notes about this draft, things you wrote but knew at the time you were going to change in the future, but what about the rest of it? All the problems you know are there but don’t know how to fix. Those clanging lines of dialogue amongst the ones that really sing. The character inconsistencies that don’t seem to ever change, no matter what you do.
Taking the next step in your project can sometimes feel like you’re back at the beginning. Particularly with a redraft. But don’t let it overawe you. The End is an incredibly powerful stage to get to, regardless of what draft you’re currently at. If it’s the end of your first draft, you’ve managed to get to the end of your first draft! They can be (and usually are) messy, hideous things that seem to have not a lot of direction and a whole lot of waffle. But you got there. And that means that the second draft will be all the better for a pudgy first draft – more to cut, more to shape and craft, more to streamline.
And the best part about hitting The End? You’re more likely to get there again in your second draft. Or the third one. Or the fourth. And yes, it takes time and effort and work to get to those six letters, but every time you reach them, you’re a step closer to typing them on that project for the last time. For me, that’s such an exciting idea – even if I don’t have any hope of making the film ever. It marks the completion of another stage of me as a writer and (hopefully) becoming even better.
It’s different for everyone, of course, but one fact still remains the same.
The End are the scariest and most elating words you will ever type onto your script.
Or blog post.