Earlier, I posted about great beginnings, building the action through the middle, and how to write a nail biting climax. Now I'd like to focus on making sure your conclusion resonates with the reader in a way that is both rewarding and incendiary.
There are a number of ways to finish a story, but depending on what kind of ending you'd like to write, you'll have to ask yourself these questions.
Will my hero succeed in achieving the story goal?
What do I want my hero to learn?
Do I want him to learn from his mistake or his success?
Whether you want a happy outcome or not, your ending will probably fall into one of the four categories.
1. Comedy. The protagonist achieves the story goal and his success results in a positive outcome.
|photo credit, blogmoviefone.com|
|photo credit, filmous.com|
3. Tragi-comedy. The protagonist fails to achieve the goal, but his failure results in a positive outcome.
In The Golden Compass, Lyra is unable to save her best friend, but his death results in her discovery of a bridge between worlds.
|photo credit, tumblr.com|
4. Comi-tragedy. The protagonist achieves the goal, but his success results in a negative outcome.
In The Great Gatsby, Jay uses criminal means to acquire the riches and lifestyle he's sought after in hopes of impressing Daisy, only to lose her and eventually his life.