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:~: Monday, November 12, 2007 :~:


First off, today is Veteran's Day. If you are a veteran, from the bottom of my heart, I say thank you for the sacrifices you make. Unfortunately, not all veterans get today off from work, but they should.


On to epilogues. Love 'em? Hate 'em? Blah about them either way? Of the last five books I've read, four have had epilogues. New trend? Probably not. Most likely it's a fluke four out of five I read lately had epilogues.

What genres tend to have epilogues? All. Cindy Gerard uses them in her RS body guard series. The epilogue is the same in each book - the family (and their significant others) all together playing croquet. What I like about Cindy's epilogues is that she uses them to introduce the next "conflict" for the next book in the series. Kind of an intriguing way to do that, I think.

A lot of paranormals tend to have epilogues, showing the HEA months after the story ends. Susan Elizabeth Phillips generally has epilogues in her books for the same reason (and hers are very fun to read). And short time-frame books (ie. chases or books that only span a few days) tend to use the epilogue to show the lasting romance.

Which authors do you think make good use of the epilogue? Which don't? If you're a writer, do you generally include an epilogue or not? Honestly, I don't think I've ever written one, but I'm not opposed to them, either. If it fits the story, I say go for it.



Blogger Shesawriter said...

Funny you should ask. I just wrote an epilogue today! :-) I write out of sequence, so tomorrow I might be doing a prologue. But I digress...

Some of the epilogues I've read seem to be there for no apparent reason because as far as I was concerned, the story had wrapped in the last chapter. I guess if we're going to include them, we have to make sure they have a purpose, and that they're not just window dressing.

4:36 PM  
Blogger Joan Swan said...

I agree with shes...an epilogue has to have a purpose, just like a prologue or a chapter or a scene. Anything put into a book has to have purpose.

I don't write them, but I love to read them. And what a great idea Cindy had to reveal the next conflict there.

7:09 PM  
Blogger B.E. Sanderson said...

I like epilogues if they're done right. I've written one, and used it as a denouement. Otherwise, I just use the last chapter to wrap up everything. What can I say, I like closure.

6:02 AM  
Blogger Elisabeth Naughton said...

Shes, I agree. So many epilogues are there for no apparant reason. I notice it more and more - a natural place for the story to end, except the author's stuck in an epilogue that's really not needed. It has to serve a purpose, just like a prologue.

8:52 AM  
Blogger Elisabeth Naughton said...

J, I've never written one either, but that doesn't mean I won't ever.

8:53 AM  
Blogger Elisabeth Naughton said...

BE, I like closure, too. :) Everything wrapped up neat and nice at the end. However, I've never written a series (like I'm starting now), so it'll be interesting to see if I think I need that epilogue at the end of book one when I get there.

8:54 AM  
Blogger Kendra said...

Love epilogues. I always want more of a good story. Especially when I'm caught up in the characters. I want to know if they have that baby nine months down the road. And I love prologues. There's usually a depth to them not found elsewhere in the story. Either VERY deep POV or backstory that gives amazing insight into a character's conflict.

8:56 AM  
Blogger Elisabeth Naughton said...

Hey Kendra :)

I love epilogues when I love the characters (like SEPs characters - generally, I don't want to say goodbye to them so the epilogues are always fun). If I don't love the characters so much, the epilogue just seems to drag out the story.

1:43 PM  

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