Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Is That The Only Ending?

Today, I was listening to The Mystery of Edwin Drood and enjoying the alternate endings. That got me thinking about how I'd once heard the movies used to come with alternate endings so you never knew what to expect (the movie Clue actually has 3 endings), and about other musicals with alternate endings (Clue: The Musical, 216 possible endings. Now isn't that a lot of options). And I got to wondering, why don't books come with alternate endings.

Wouldn't it be fun if, say, a murder mystery came with alternate endings depending on who you really wanted to be the killer? Or maybe they just say Options A,B,and C. I, personally, would enjoy having a chance to read the book three different ways.

Me, I've never thought of alternate endings to my stories. I always knew before I got down to the business how the story was going to end. (Somewhat easier for me than for others, maybe, since I tend towards happy endings.) But, if I had two endings I liked equally, I might write both and see how it goes.

How do you feel about the idea of alternate endings in books? Would you ever write extra endings to one of your works? Are there books with alternate endings?


  1. I actually wrote 3 different endings for my completed manuscript. I definitely liked one the best so I stuck with it, but the others are interesting. I also know that on several occassions, I was disappointed with a book's ending, and wished it had an alternate ending. Interesting thought.

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  3. LW -- I don't know if I could ever write that many endings, not unless I really felt I had to. But those interesting endings could be used. Maybe, one day, there will be a second edition of that book, and with that second edition there you can use the alternate endings. :D

  4. Oh, I don't know. I never watch the alternate endings on DVDs because I feel like I just want to know what really happened. I've written lots of endings for my manuscript but that just happens in revisions. I don't know if, for me, reading alternate endings would enrich the experience.