06 January 2011

Speaking of Climax

A recent plot consultation reflects confusion many writers have about the Climax of their stories.

In telling me the end (1/4) of her story, the writer describes her climax  which is the perfect and unexpected (twist) end for the dramatic action plot. Problems arise as another seven to nine major scenes and chapters follow what the writer had labeled as the climax to her story. 

The climax brings the energy of the overall story to a head and once it is over, the story is over, too. One chapter or scene follows the climax to bring the story to resolution but no more than that. When the energy is over, the story is over. To take the story further, though most readers never want a story they love to end, even the most loyal reader loses her enthusiasm as the story drags on and energy peters out.

However, in the consultation, it quickly becomes evident that the energy of the story does not lessen but does, in fact, grow. And, of the scenes that follow what she calls her climax, the second to the last chapter is the true climax -- this one being the character emotional development climax.

Yes, in most stories, both the dramatic action plot and character emotional development plot usually coalesce at the end for more punch and impact though, in this case, the character emotional development plot climax carries tremendous energy and excitement and shows the character at her most transformed and doing something she was unable to do anywhere else in the story. She needed to experience every other scene in order to die to who she has always been and rise up out of the ashes. 

Her story begins with the character emotional development plot and it is fitting and right that the crowning glory of the story revolve around the character emotional development plot. 

I have said it before:

Beginning hook readers.
Ending creates fans.

Watch how and where you end your story in order to keep your fans happy and satisfied and eager for your next release.

Click on green highlighted plot concepts for further explanations via video. Each time a concept is referenced you are directed to new information.