This section takes up the last quarter of your novel, or perhaps a little less.
1. What last, desperate push or sacrifice does your protagonist take to accomplish his/her goal?
2. How does he/she finally reveal his secret or face her weakness, and overcome it? What does he/she do that he/she swore he/she would never do? Why?
3. Why is your protagonist's last effort successful? How successful is it?
4. What is the cost of this victory: To the protagonist? To the antagonist? To the friend, the mentor and the love interest? In what way is each of them changed forever, particularly the protagonist?
5. The protagonist's world has forever changed. Describe the new world and his/her relationship to it.
These five questions must be answered in the last 4-6 chapters of your novel. In a stand-alone novel, they are usually answered completely, although there are exceptions - for example, in Gone With the Wind, Scarlett is determined to get Rhett back, and we are left hoping she will. In a book that is part of a series, it's more common to leave some threads dangling, a hint of things to come, which will be followed up in the next book in the series.
6. will you close off all your story lines, or leave some open for a future novel? If the latter, what will you leave open?
You've worked hard - your novel is planned and outlined, you're ready to write. Take the weekend to tweak the ideas you've worked on, or add to them. On Monday, I'll be back with tips for writing your first draft in record time.
Please comment, tweet or like this post. See you tomorrow!