1. Blag
    Offline

    Blag New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0

    How to establish an end to a story/novel in planning phase?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Blag, Aug 24, 2015.

    I've had this chronic inability to end a story since forever. I would start writing a story, with a VERY vague ending, and stop writing when I realise the plot is leading nowhere/is inconsistent (has happened almost a dozen times). I've realised that to build a good bridge, you need to first establish a strong starting, a concrete ending and then lay the bridgeway.

    I've also decided now to not start writing a story straight away hoping that I'll make something consistent of it later on, instead I'll sit, plan, develop the complete timeline and names and events and effects and stuff, and then pen it down finally. But the problem is, I'm always able to convince myself of a proper starting, but never been able to convince myself of a good ending point, the point where I'll decide to stop/comclude the complete storyline, get up and receive critique.

    Its my first post here, so I'm not sure if its the correct subforum.
     
  2. Tenderiser
    Offline

    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2015
    Messages:
    4,281
    Likes Received:
    5,150
    Location:
    London, UK
    I totally relate to this. I'm redoing a 90,000 word story because I didn't plan properly to begin with. Thankfully it's now going very well and I'm able to use a lot of the original with some edits.

    I'm not entirely sure what you mean by this: "never been able to convince myself of a good ending point, the point where I'll decide to stop/comclude the complete storyline, get up and receive critique." Do you mean you can't think of an ending to your story that feels complete enough to say "yes, this is the end?" Or you never feel happy enough with the finished story to offer it for critique?
     
  3. Tesoro
    Offline

    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2011
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    290
    Location:
    A place with no future
    I'm not really sure what you mean either, but my first thought is this:
    *find out what your characters goal is within the story
    *then you can think of the outcome you want regarding that goal. Is he going to succeed? Fail? What do you want him to learn during the course of the story, and how will he grow?
    Of course, a character can want several things within a story, but there's usually one main goal that the novel revolves around, regardless of the number of subplots. If you know what the mc wants, it should be easier to both come up with a suitable ending and knowing when to end. If you're not really sure what his goal is, then maybe you need to define that before you go any further.
    Re: the middle, even that is easier to find out if you know the goal. The mc need to take the necessary steps towards whatever he wants. I see this a lot when I beta read for beginning writers. Their character has no real goal in the story. There are usually lots of things happening, but there's nothing to connect the events to each other. PLUS the character himself isn't acting, but merely reacting to stuff that somehow happens TO him. He isn't driving the story. He's more like a victim to the circumstances. So try to think in terms of
    *goal
    *motivation
    *conflict
    *outcome
     
  4. Blag
    Offline

    Blag New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Both actually.

    Thanks for pointing out, I've realised I've generally missed on the goal. The goal of my mc was generally "Survive" and those of anti-mc were "Kill/arrest him" and pro-mc were "Help the mc to survive". Survival only ends in death. I'll just try writing something else where the mc isn't just always surviving. But to think of it, much of the cause of actions done by people irl is to survive socially/literally/financially, right?
     
  5. Aaron DC
    Offline

    Aaron DC Contributing Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2015
    Messages:
    2,554
    Likes Received:
    1,251
    Location:
    At my keyboard
    Why does he want to survive? Why go on living?
     
  6. Blag
    Offline

    Blag New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2015
    Messages:
    12
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks for a new angle to tackle it.
     

Share This Page