Well… That Ended Badly.

I read a book this week that I was really enjoying. It kept me hooked right to the end, and then came the death blow: a sudden, out-of-nowhere, poorly executed ending. Without warning, or even the slightest hint that it was coming, the story just stopped. 

I hate that. I hate it so much that I am deferring writing my review until I’ve got over my annoyance at it. The story was so good, and the characters so interesting, that I was completely absorbed in it. And then? Suddenly, POOF! It’s all over. 

I dislike cliffhanger endings to books at the best of times. 
This one was not even the best of times.
It wasn’t really a cliffhanger, either. It was more like the whole book got snatched out of my hands and thrown over the cliff, and might never be seen again. 

It was possibly the worst sudden ending to a story I’ve ever experienced. It made me think that maybe the author did not know how to properly end a story, even though they obviously knew how to write the rest of one. 

I fully understand why authors design those suspenseful endings – they want to keep readers guessing and anticipating what comes next so they’ll read the next book. 

Here’s the thing, though: if the book is good, I’m going to buy and read the next one anyway. If the writing or editing is poor, or the storyline is weak, a cliffhanger isn’t going to make me buy or read the next one. 

If there has to be a sudden ending, or a cliffhanger, there should at least be enough resolution in the final chapters to answer some of the questions raised in the book. By all means, leave questions unanswered. Just— not all of them. 

I do quite like suspense and anticipation.
I love the sensation of looking forward to the next book.
I do not enjoy an ending that leaves me wondering if the author’s computer crashed and the final chapter was irretrievably lost. 

I read a lot of books, and for me, a quality conclusion is as important as the opening paragraphs. You can win or lose readers right there, regardless of how good the rest of the book might be. 

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Attention: Facebook

Due to recent trends, my algorithm has been realigned.

You may notice that your invitations to boost my posts or create advertisements will receive zero attention. Some may be marked as spam due to lower perceived relevance to the audience. 

If you won’t show my posts to the people who do follow me, I most certainly will not be paying you to show them to people who don’t. 

Because, as you say so often yourself, “it’s all about engagement”. 

Fortunately for the rest of us, there are other places to “engage”, too. 
Are you aware that Twitter neither suppress nor hides anything I post? As soon as it’s sent, BAM, it’s out there for the whole Twitverse to see.

We’re you aware that WordPress allows me to use tags, categories and SEO to make my posts available beyond those who already follow my blog? And they do it free of charge. Ingenious, no?  

I’ll still give you a little attention, Facey. But not as much as you want. And not to help you make money. From what I have heard on the news, you’ve already got quite enough out of people like me. 

Laxative Proximity.

Today, I developed a new phrase which I think is going to prove very useful for me, if not for anyone else. 

The term is laxative proximity.  

It describes the phenomenon where the effect of a particular individual’s presence gives one the feeling or mood commonly known as “the sh*ts”. 

The higher the laxative proximity (LP), the greater that effect.

Some people can manage to have a powerful LP effect from a considerable distance. All it takes is for someone to mention their name, or they send you a text or email, or they comment on a friend’s Facebook post… and those telltale first sensations of the LP effect kick in.
Others have a more cumulative effect: the more time you spend with them, the worse it gets.
At the same time, some individuals are so toxic, it’s impossible to be completely immune. 
Hence, it should be noted that LP has quite a strong residual effect. It can take considerable time for the effect to wear off. 

I believe that my observation and definition of LP may just prove to be a significant moment in history.  
I Googled the phrase, and it seems that nobody has used the term in this sense on the internet before.  There were two or three occurrences that seemed like very poor internet based translation in response to some of the 1,350,000 results (in 0.73 seconds, no less) that suggested various forms and uses of laxatives for physical relief and/or colonic cleansing.

It really does seem as though I have achieved something I’ve often thought I’d like to do: creating a newly-coined phrase of my own.

Gosh, I’m feeling very accomplished for this early on a Friday night.