It caught me off guard for a bit, and I really had to think about it for a while before answering. I have to admit, I was surprised to discover that for me, the most difficult part of completing the series actually had nothing to do with writing.
It's saying 'goodbye' to the characters.
I shared in their love, frustrations, insecurities, and pain. I received every single one of Mionee and Darrak's blows as if they were my own. I helped them find hope and strength when they had none left. I was the friend they needed when they were deserted, alone, and frightened.
I was everyone's voice when they had none.
And now, I have to leave them behind.
I can't completely bring myself to accept that their stories are over. I want to follow them as they grow and share in their joy. I want to see the choices they make and be there for them when they need help or a shoulder to cry on. I want to continue being their voice amid their silence.
But I can't. I have to move on. I have to write the next chapter in Dragonath's history. New characters. New stories. New loves. New losses. Then, when it's done, I'll have to say my final goodbye all over again.
For as an author, my characters don't just go away at the completion of a series. They die.
And that is more difficult than I ever imagined.