Tips on how to finish your novel

iUniverse totally understands that writing a novel is no easy task. The planning, contemplating, and actual writing are indeed a noble endeavor! Today, iUniverse provides some advice on how to finally reach “The End”.

Writing can be a wonderful feeling, especially when you get into that groove where you are almost seamlessly transferring your thoughts to paper. However, like anything else, too much can have a negative effect, and some writers insist on continuing their story well past the time where it has reached its peak. Readers then get tired, and it may ultimately affect sales of your novel.

With this in mind, iUniverse provides some guidance on how to know when to “close the book” on your novel:


The immortal Mr. Pickwick, from Dickens’ The Pickwick Papers

Characters: It is common that authors will become “attached” to their characters and want to keep creating new adventures and dialogue for them. After all, you invented them! The problem is that your book cannot go on forever. Charles Dickens commits an error of this nature in The Pickwick Papers – a splendid novel, but one in which escapade follows escapade well after the book has reached its high point. Even George Orwell, in his essay on Dickens, states that the characters in the novel “go on and on . . . in some type of eternity”.

When is a character “done”? When his or her main challenge, or issue, has been resolved. After this, you can give them a final chapter or epilogue, but keep it short and sweet. Let your character exit on a high note, and they will stay in the readers’ minds. If you truly love your character and cannot let go, bring that character into your next novel.

Which books, in your opinion, should have been ended earlier?

We’ll be back with Part Two very shortly!

Make sure to check out the iUniverse site for more advice and blogs, as well as iUniverse Facebook and iUniverse Twitter.



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The iUniverse Blog encourages discussion between iUniverse authors and is designed as a platform for you to let us know about your book’s success, your book events and other news you think will be of interest to your fellow writers. iUniverse authors are invited to participate in the iUniverse Blog as guest bloggers. Please contact us if you would like to be an iUniverse guest blogger.

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