The white space I’m staring at here intimidates me everytime I show up to write on it. This is because I know I need an introductory statement that will catch someone’s interest and drag them deeper inside to see what’s next. It’s because I must come up with a post title that contains keywords (if I want it to come in topical searches), or raises your curiosity enough to see what I have to say.
Then, I have to write something in this middle section that’s interesting, intelligent, thoughtful, inspiring, credible, and doesn’t waste your time.
And after that whole ordeal, before I ‘m even done writing, I’m fiddling around with the ending. It has to let you go, but not forget me.
Kathy Sierra made my day today when I found her post called, Give users a Hollywood ending. She’s always an entertaining, thoughtful writer. This piece, though, is one of those “Thank goodness somebody is talking about this!” posts because it shows I’m not the only person on the planet sweating out my endings.
She leads off with,
The way we end a conversation, blog post, user experience, presentation, tech support session, chapter, church service, song, whatever… is what they’ll remember most. The end can matter more to users than everything we did before. And the feeling they leave with is the one they might have forever.
Then, she offers examples. But my favorite part is The List. I won’t give it away. Please go there and read it. I’ve printed it out. She presents a way in which you can interview your ending. One hint:
Do I want my users to feel like they kick ass?
This reminds me of how coaches blab on and on to their teams about what they need to do, how awful the other team is, and forget about the pain in that body. It’s how they end those speeches that counts the most. It sends the team out onto the field pumped up and screaming like idiots.
Now, for a moment, let me visualize the power I have here, and how I can make you all run around screaming like idiots.
Had a little too much fun with that one.