Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Happily Ever After

You guys know I'm a happily ever after girl. Every book I've written has one and I can't see myself writing a book that doesn't. For me, that reason is because I consider my books romances. If you've read anything by me you know romance isn't the only thing you'll get when you open one of my books, but if people ask me what I write, I say romance. Writing a "traditional" romance requires (at least to me) a happily ever after. So when I say HEA--that's typically what I mean. The couple ending up together "forever".

If you ask any of my friends, most of them will tell you I need a HEA in my books. But I'm going to let you in on a little secret. Quite a few of my all time favorite reads didn't have an ending where the couple ends up together. They weren't a "traditional HEA" yet these are the books that kept me thinking for days afterward. Books have left some of the deepest impact on me. I almost shudder to write that because I don't want it to sound wrong. I don't want to make it sound like romance books don't have a deep impact on me or don't make me think because they do. You guys know I'm a romantic at heart and romance will always be a HUGE part of what I read and write...but when I think of these books I'm talking about, though there is romance in them, I don't consider them romances. There is much more going on. The romance isn't the main theme. They're more about growth.

Even though those endings my have hurt my heart, or I'm still thinking and wondering about certain characters, sad for them or curious about them, wondering what happened with their lives and hoping they find a way to get everything they deserve, I realize those endings were as they should be. They were real, even when they hurt. And I think that's part of what makes them take up residency in my thoughts. The openness, the possibilities, make it seem endless. They make me wonder and think and create a future where anything is possible.

That's sort of a beautiful thing.

Do you like books with an open ending? Books where the couple you fall in love with, doesn't end up together?

PS... One thing that I think needs to be said, I've only been okay with this happening in contemporary YA for some reason. LOL. Maybe because that's LIFE, it's real and those years of our lives are so uncertain. Something to think about.

Oh, on a side note, deaths slay me. I can't handle those for one of my main characters. I think people who can are freaking awesome. That's just not me. LOL. My heart is too tender for that :)


  1. I love me an ambiguous ending. I don't mind if the ending is sad or even tragic, but there has to be spark of hope in there somewhere, some minute possibility that these people who may not be right for each other right now, may be in the future.

  2. If it's done right, I LOVE books with an open ending. But I prefer the HEA, Give me traditional romance! Haha. As long as it's true to life, like you said, it doesn't matter :)

  3. I live real life every day. When I read a book, I want to be taken away from my reality, not reminded of how effed up the world is. For me, hope comes from knowing that this couple that I've fallen in love with is okay. They are together and happy at the very least for right now. Because when I have to put the book down and go back to my reality that little bit of hope tags along with me. It's cool for those who don't need it, but if I don't get my HEA, I at least need a HRN (happy right now).

  4. You know me. i love the open ending. AND I just unkilled one of my main characters as the request of my editor ;-)

  5. The only open ending I've loved is The Sea of Tranquility (and Where She Went has a hint of an open ending as well.. though, it's more certain than TSoT). I loved the promise it held in it, but I still wish there could have been a bit more perhaps. I don't need an HEA epilogue, if that's what you're asking. Sometimes they're totally over the top and ruin the story even. I think that.. HEA is needed more because we usually escape the real life by reading and what better way to receive hope and get a smile on your face than by reading something gorgeous and happy. So.. yes, I love my HEAs. However, there are some cases where a realistic ending works (If I Lie by Corrinne Jackson, for instance). I like Sarah's comment since HRN is the best way to end things. You never know what the future holds, but HRN is the best thing ever!

  6. I need a happy ending. I do. Life is hard enough as it is and I read for entertainment. An escape. When things don't work out in a book well.... I just don't enjoy it. I read for the romance of it all. I want those feelings. I love the feeling of "the first kiss" when my whole body goes tingly and it becomes harder to breathe.

    I just love a happy ending. So sue me.


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