I’ve wrapped up The Kings of Charleston series and I’ve had mixed feelings about it. The whole time I was furiously finishing the last book, I kept telling myself I couldn’t wait to be finished. I was tired of it consuming my every waking moment. Any time I was doing anything but writing, whether the other thing was important or not, I felt guilty that I wasn’t writing. There was this pressure over me to finish this project, but I’m a serious procrastinator and so the pressure just kept building till I thought I would go crazy.
I was also excited to finish the series and ready for these characters that I was spending way too much time with to get out of my head. Every song I heard would prompt a new scene to roll through my head or every movie would make me think about how it could effect my own work. Casper and her gang were wearing out their welcome.
When finally the day came where I was staring at The End, I was elated. The weight lifted off of me and I wanted to party. No more feeling guilty for not sitting down to write when sometimes I just didn’t feel like it. No more telling my family I can’t do this because I needed to focus on the book instead of spending time with them. I could move on with other projects in my life.
But, something happened a few days The End came. I was driving home, listening to a song and realized my mind wasn’t going a hundred miles an hour trying to think up new scenes. No matter how hard I tried, nothing came to mind concerning the books. Casper was truly gone from my thoughts, which signaled to me that her story was finished. She was done with me. This finality hit me like a ton of bricks and I’ll be honest, I cried.
It might sound crazy, but unless you’ve written a book or are an intense reader, it’s hard to explain how much of your mind is consumed by these people you’ve made up in your brain. They become a part of your family in a crazy way and to part with them was a lot harder than I ever thought it would be.
I did feel happy knowing that her story had come to a conclusion. The fact that she no longer dominated my thoughts reassured me that her story was truly done and I wasn’t leaving the story without a satisfying conclusion.But the unexpected side effect was the feeling that there was a hole in my heart (or maybe in my mind?). It was a stark realization that I felt out of sorts without some story running through my head. Sure, there are a couple of stories clanging around my noggin, but nothing has dominated my thoughts quite like Casper did.
So here’s to the next story coming to me quickly and filling the void Casper and Cal left behind.