*Nonfiction*

You’ve written your climax/call to action, and you’re ready to end. How much time to spend dwelling on your own brilliance?

As we discussed last week, not a lot. Unlike fiction writers, who want the reader to linger in the world of their book, you want your readers to get out and go do something in the real world. So don’t keep them too long.

There are a few ways you can milk your book’s ending without taking too much page space:

1. Remind the reader of your book’s awesomeness.
If you’ve done a good job explaining the topic of your book throughout each chapter, you’ve justified a few lines of pomp. Remind the readers of how their lives will improve if they put your advice into practice. Remind them of how much they’ve already learned from you.

2. Ask for more business.
If part of your goal in writing a book is to drive people toward your business, go ahead and provide links to your website, blog, or marketing page. You’ve given them valuable information; you’ve earned the right to suggest they might want more, and to tell them where to go get it.

3. Encourage the reader.
Remind them that they can do whatever you’ve taught them to do. If you’re promoting your business, offer your ongoing help and direct them to your website. (This goes along with suggestion two.)

You may not do all, or any, of these things, but if they fit into your book, they’ll help you make the most of your ending in a short and sweet manner.

*This Week’s Word Count*
Nonfiction: 47,250
Your book is as long as: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

*Fiction*

You’ve taken the reader on a thrilling ride through your book, and now you’re winding down.

How do you milk the ending for everything it’s worth?

Here are a few ways:

1. Emotional Aftermath
Did something traumatic happen to your characters? Let them discuss it. Let them seek ways to recover, and consider the long-term consequences of what happened. Your readers care about these people, so let them show some vulnerability.

2. Political Aftermath
How is the world going to look moving forward from the events in the book? Who is on the protagonist’s side, who is an enemy, and who is in the fuzzy grey area in between? Let the characters consider these shifting allegiances and what they mean for the future.

3. Social Aftermath
How has the protagonist’s social status changed since the start of the book? What does that mean? Let the character reflect on…you get the idea.

4. Spiritual Aftermath
How has the protagonist changed internally? How have their beliefs about the world shifted?

You won’t necessarily use all four of these aftermaths, but by devoting some time to the repercussions of the important ones in your book, you’ll make sure you get the most out of your ending.

*This Week’s Word Count*
Fiction: 75,000
Your book is as long as: The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger

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