CLIMAX

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02 Mar

CLIMAX

Hi folks, Most of you are heading towards the end of your stories (or at least can see the ending in the distance), so it’s time to talk about writing the climax. The climax is the top of that plot mountain teachers are always talking about, the final battle, the answer to the mystery, the show-down, the throw-down, the most exciting moment of the entire story.  A great climax feels both surprising and inevitable, exciting and true.  So, how do write this magical scene?  Well, obviously, you should write the heck out of that scene with vivid descriptions, witty dialogue, and strong emotions.   Also, try to remember these structural tips: 1) Isolation – At the end of your story, your protagonist needs to fight his demons on his own.  Yes, there can be other people around, but the one who really counts, who is at the center of the action, is your protagonist. 2) Confrontation –  Your protagonist needs to confront the antagonist head-on, or confront her greatest fear.  Remember the moment in The Princess Bride?  “My name is Inigo Montoya.  You killed my father.  Prepare to die.” 3) Dark Moment – The climactic scene must not be easy, it cannot go well.  The protagonist should find himself overcome, outclassed, and outgunned before he ultimately rises to the challenge.  If it’s easy, it won’t be satisfying to the reader. 4) Resolution – This is where everything get wrapped up.  Your characters are moving on to the new normal, the fear is over, the questions are answered, and the reader can catch her breath. Does that mean your story needs to have a happy ending?  Absolutely not!  However, the ending must leave your protagonist changed in some way, preferably both internally and externally. As always, remember that you get out what you put in.  So spend the time to make it great.

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