Some thoughts on HEAs

Call me weird—because I am—but I don’t always have a resounding preference for romantic stories or arcs with a happy ending. Sure, it’s nice to see a tale come to an end where everything works out perfectly (HEA), or almost perfectly (HFN), and it’s far more preferable not to feel as if part of my soul has been torn apart because a character dies or for whatever other reason is unable or unwilling to be with his beloved. But sometimes I think there are situations in which an ambiguous or unhappy ending is truer to the story. Do those stories make me roll into a ball and cry for hours on end? Yeah, sometimes. However, I can live with that heartbreak as long as it is justified. I think this is the reason why some of my favorite titles don’t end with a happily ever after, because the overall story is better for not having everything tied into a pretty red bow at the end. Not to mention the fact that any feelings of suspense that I might have while reading a story are negated by knowing in advance that everything will work out when all is said and done, where “Oooh, I wonder if they’ll get together” turns into “I wonder how many more pages to go before they get together.” One is not nearly as exciting as the other.

I have no idea if—and I certainly can’t promise—every single one of my stories will end on a pleasant note. My muse has taken me to dark places before, so it’s hard to say. What I can promise is that I will always write an ending that I feel is truest to the story being told. And I hope that counts for something, even if it means that there will be no strolling off into the sunset hand in hand.

And so ends my deep thought for the day, to make up for the fact that I didn’t do a Throwback Thursday post. 😀

E*

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