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Subject: Finishing a story

I write creatively a few times a week (or more if something sparks my interest) and I have started a lot of different stories. But after the first few carefully written pages, I lose focus and the stories usually trail off. I'm wondering how to focus on and finish a story, while still maintaining concise dialogue and subtle subtext.

I can't tell you "how" to focus, nor tell you  "how" to finish a story that you began.. this is a personal commitment that a writer must make to himself, as an accomplished writer.

In other words, if your desire is really to write, become published, make a career of writing-- then make the commitment.

Just as any job, you have to commit to keep the job, do it well, and get paid.

No commitment- no money.

Keep a journal of your story "ideas" and do not begin any writing process on them.

Pick one.
Commit to that only... but you can always add ideas to your journal for future stories, details, characters, anything that sparks a story, etc.
Stephen King has successfully done this since college. Look at the novels he has under his collar.

Take your selected story, outline it, expand it, develop it, and write it... consistently nurture it, stay with it until it is finished to your satisfaction.

If you lose interest-- then so will the reader. You are lacking in the key elements of the story line, the plot, the sub plots, necessary drama, real crisis, the character development (making them 3-D and alive)...
...When your characters be ome 3-D and actually come alive, they will write your story for you and, you, the narrator, will pen them willingly and with excitement.
You will love and hate your characters, and feel them alive as any of your actual friends, family, or even, enemies.

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