Friday, July 21, 2017

Writing a Satisfying Ending: Hints about How to Wrap Up Your Story

This week I'm traveling to one of my favorite places:  Madeline Island and the Madeline Island School of the Arts, where I teach each summer and fall.  I'm about to welcome a group of twenty-three writers who will be attending my workshop/retreat and my independent study week.  We'll be diving deep into our book projects for five days, free of interruptions.  Looking for breakthroughs.

One of the assignments I offer the group is to draft their final chapter.  Because the group is varied in writing experience and progress with their projects, this suggestion often gets astonished reactions.  "How can I possibly write my final chapter when I don't know what the rest of the book is about!?" 



I'm used to these reactions.  I have a good reason.  Almost all of the writers go for the idea and many of them are delighted by the result.

Writing the final chapter isn't as hard as it seems.   Here are two articles that tell writers what to look for--and what to avoid.

From The Atlantic.
From The New Yorker.

Enjoy!