“I started lots of great stories when I was a child, but I NEVER finished them. Sometimes I even abandoned them mid-sentence. Shocking, I know.”
Francesca Simon, author of the Horrid Henry series, shares her top tips for finishing a story.
It’s easy to start a story, and it’s hard to finish one. But help is at hand. Here are my top tips for finishing your 500 word stories.
1. Write the end first. There’s no law that says you have to start at the beginning.
2. Think of a great twist, or a surprise, or a shock we weren’t expecting. The end is key in a 500 word story.
3. A story is a journey. How are your characters DIFFERENT at the end than they were at the beginning? What’s happened to them?
4. Ask yourself what your characters want, and then what’s stopping them. Do they get what they want, or discover something else?
5. Underline words you’ve used a lot and see if you can think of another word that might work better in its place. If you get stuck, try using a thesaurus to help you.
6. Write a bad first draft. Just get it down on paper with a beginning, middle, and end. Then re-write. And re-write. And re-write some more.