How to write an ending that’s at least as good as your lead

Endings, endings, endings. Sentences have endings. So do paragraphs. So do chapters. And hopefully, so does your story.

The ending of your story may say to the reader, “I decided to stop writing here.” But if you have the readers’ needs in mind, you want your ending to be more than that. If your story is short, you want your ending to “stick the landing,” the way a great gymnast completes a volt.

If your story is long, your ending should serve as a reward to your reader for following you to that destination.

Don’t you remember that movie you saw that had the terrible ending? Remember how you and your friends grumbled as you left the theatre? Don’t make your readers grumble when they finish your story. Make them laugh, cry, cheer, write a note to their mothers. All accomplished with a great ending.

In this week’s writing chat, I talked about all of this and offer related tips. You can replay this chat at any time.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Palubiak/100002624473209 Mike Palubiak

    I have the same issues. I seem to be able to grab a readers attention just long enough to pull them into the article. Then slowly start to lose them towards the close, and finally end with something less than memorable.

    http://www.perfectpowerwash.net

    and

    http://www.icedampro.com

    Are two of my sites that people initially land on but I just cant seem to keep them looking. I know the content and information is relevant and up to date but for some reason I cant keep a steady flow of readers.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_273LKK5WFKKZEOHJS7YQKSMQIU abuomar

    Roy:  I fully agree
    with you. The main point is that the journalist must be a creative author and
    do not act as a camera. He is more a painter than a photographer. He must give
    life to his story from its leads to its ending, but on one condition; he has to
    stick to the absolute truth with the details and facts when he writes his story
    and do not let his imagination or his ability of the language to distort his
    piece of art. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_273LKK5WFKKZEOHJS7YQKSMQIU abuomar

    Roy:  I fully agree
    with you. The main point is that the journalist must be a creative author and
    do not act as a camera. He is more a painter than a photographer. He must give
    life to his story from its leads to its ending, but on one condition; he has to
    stick to the absolute truth with the details and facts when he writes his story
    and do not let his imagination or his ability of the language to distort his
    piece of art. 

  • Anonymous

    As the late Steve Lovelady used to say at The Philadelphia Inquirer, reward the reader for staying with the story with a well-crafted walk-off line.