act III: end

Act III: How to write the End

At this point, the reader has felt and seen the forces gather against the protagonist. Absolute disaster is just around the corner. The way you set up the story up to this point, determines the expectation readers have about how it will end. For them, it’s more than an expectation, it’s a silent promise you made. A noisy action packed story promised a big bang at the end. A subtle story promised a quiet ending.


The Three Act Structure

Stories are told in three parts (a part is called an act), the beginning, the middle, and the end. In other words, act 1, act 2 and act 3. Each part serves a specific and important role in telling the story. The beginning introduces the main characters in their daily environment and sets them on course of the adventure or problem. The middle is used to explore options, deepen the characters and set all the elements up to be in just the right place for the finale. The finale is where the fireworks happen, the deepest depths and the highest high, the grand battle and resolution.