As you near the end of your project, it’s important to consider the link between the beginning and the end.
Linking the Beginning to the Ending
The beginning and ending of a story should not only be strong, but they should be related in some way.
This may be through reiterating the stated or implied theme at the beginning again at the end of the story, referring back to the symbolism used throughout the story, using situation to mirror or contrast the beginning, coming back to a specific action or piece of information, or other similar methods of tying the two scenes together.
The ending will have more meaning to the reader if the beginning and the end tie together in a meaningful way. To be meaningful, the final scene should relate to the overall concept of the story, which should have been layout or hinted at in the early chapters.
Look back at the beginning scene and consider what message it communicated to the reader, particularly what promises it made, what theme(s) it introduced, what changes the character needed to make in order to find purpose or happiness, etc.
Once you isolate that message, look at your ending scene and make sure that you are fulfilling reader expectations. This may mean fulfilling a promise, completing a character or story arc, or coming back to a theme or concept important to the story or character.
The ending scene should fulfill reader expectations set in the early chapters so they put down the book feeling satisfied.
Final Scene Crafting Detail to Consider
When reviewing scenes, there are a few important factors to consider:
- Make sure scenes have the right balance of details to create a full scene without bogging it down.
- Descriptive details should be pertinent to the action, help create mood and tone, or accentuate the dialogue.
- Details should use all relevant senses to create a full picture of the setting, the characters, and the emotion.
- Details should reveal something relevant to the character or story and not be superfluous. A clenched fist shows anger, fidgeting conveys unease, food and clothing choices set the stage and reveal preferences, etc.
The structure of a story determines how well it will be told. Poorly thought out or constructed stories frustrate readers and confuse the purpose of the story.