A Beginning After the End

20170530ma_1382“People have forgotten how to tell a story. Stories don’t have a middle or an end any more. They usually have a beginning that never stops beginning.” – Steven Spielberg

I recently came across this quote and thought, do I agree with this? Is it true? Is it not? Is it partly true?

The more I think about it, the more I do think that it’s true. The end of a good story is never really the end of the story, is it? Even “And they lived happily ever after” implies that something does happen after the book is closed for the final time.

The same goes for the Epilogue. It will summarize what happens next, but still it doesn’t actually finish the story. Unless, maybe if the main character dies.

But even if the main character dies, the rest of the story world continues. Other characters still live on.

Just as in real life.

And the stories that touch us the most have to have some part of real life in them. That’s why I think we’re drawn to such stories. Now this is not true for every story or book. I’ve read my fair share of books where the characters and plots are, at best, just “okay”. Others could be better described as dull and lifeless (and perhaps even trying too hard, but not succeeding). These stories, we’re probably glad to see the end of.

But for good books… For the stories that stick with us… These are the stories where the end of the book is really just another beginning.

It’s a beginning that comes after The End.

 

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4 thoughts on “A Beginning After the End

  1. I resonate with this. I think the Encyclopedia Brown books by Donald J. Sobol are another victimized series, unfortunately. I used to love these even though they were old when I was in a kid (bless my elementary school librarian!). My local library recently had a sale where they flushed these out. True, they were old and quite worn, but you know they’re not going to be replacing them. I scooped them up for when I have nephews and nieces! They won’t grow up ignorant!

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  2. Encyclopedia Brown is great! I also recently found some old mysteries by E.W. Hildick… The Case of Slingshot Sniper… The Case of the Purloined Parrot… to name a few. They remind me of Encyclopedia Brown. I find these books oddly comforting, even though I never read them as a kid. The library still has them (for now).

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    • Yes, definitely. This is something I’ve been doing recently. I always make sure I take out at least one classic book along with my stack of other books. Even if I own the book myself. Just to remind the library that there are people who still love these books!

      Liked by 1 person

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