5 Tips For Writing Your Climax

5 Tips by Anne Brees

The climax is one of the most important parts of your story. After building up all of your subplots for the entire novel, your character must finally face everything and do THE THING. Here are a few components you should make sure to include in your climax.

  1. How has your character changed? One of the most important parts of a climax is making sure that your character arc changes. After all your MC should be a dynamic character. (A dynamic character is a character who changes or grows through the story.) Maybe your character finally gains courage to do the thing that she has been avoiding the whole story. Maybe the character finally forgives or understands someone that has hurt her. No matter what it is, your character should be changed, for better or for worse, after your climax.
  2. What is the consequence? Throughout your story, there should be some kind of consequence that is keeping the character from doing THE THING. Maybe she’ll lose or hurt someone that she loves. Maybe she’s afraid of what someone will think or do to her. After the climax, do these consequences fall upon her?
  3. Did she succeed, fail, or somewhere in between? Answer this question in different ways. Does your character think that she succeeded in her goal? Do others characters, her friends and enemies, think that she succeeded? What about a distant bystander?
  4. What happened to your villain? Even if your villain isn’t a person, this question still has to be answered. Once your character does THE THING, how does the villain respond? Is she defeated and dies? Runs away? Plots more revenge? Realizes her actions and apologizes? Your readers will want to know what happens to your villain just as much as your MC.
  5. Are most, if not all, of your subplots wrapped up? Unless you are planning a sequel, make sure that all of your subplots are wrapped up. There’s nothing that frustrates readers more than not getting answers to all of the story questions. Even if you are planning a sequel, it’s still a good idea to get most of the plot threads wrapped up, so that the ending feels like an actual ending.

Writing the climax of the story can be daunting. However, if you break it down and make sure you have all of the components, it should be much easier.

What tricks do you use for writing your climax?


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