It’s Wednesday. For about a year, Wednesday meant posting a new chapter of Unforeseen Dives. But not this week.
The sudden change in routine emphasizes one crucial aspect of writing: the moment when the story is done and the author grieves.
The “done” point of a story varies according to where we stand as an author. From the completion of the first draft, to the shipping to beta readers or the printing of the first copies, it all depends on our perception of what “done” means.
But every story, at some point, ends.
Sometimes the end rhymes with “accomplishment”. On other occasions, it’s more akin to “finally *le sigh*”. Wherever our story lands on the spectrum, once the initial emotion has passed, we’re left with a whole in our heart. Or our schedule. 😉
My story and I share a short to long-term love/hate relationship. The end of it hurts at first. I think about the story. I might even want to get back together. But I need to let go. A period of time passes when I don’t think about the story anymore before I can revisit its memory with a crooked smile.
I grieve. Do you?
Out of respect for my other stories, I try to take a break between the end of a story and the beginning (or continuation) of another. I don’t want my grief to unconsciously taint all my other works so I need to get pass the initial “I miss it so much” stage before I can commit to a new relationship.
That grieving period spans from hours to weeks, according to the length and emotional involvement of the project.
How long do you let the dust settle after a story is done?