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What Is a Good Way to End a Narrative Paragraph?


Consider how many times you have been disappointed by a conclusion either because that conclusion lacked logic, vision or revelation. Then, there are those pieces which seem to go nowhere and just end without that feeling of closure. Conclusions can be a challenge even for the most gifted writers, much less the beginning writer. To create a good ending for your narrative paragraph you should practice the following steps.

Reflect on What You Learned

If you are writing a personal narrative, your ending should also include reflection, or your thoughts about the event. If you are writing a fictional account, include the character's reflection. Consider the conclusions you came to that will shape future actions. End by explaining what you would do differently should the situation come up again. Offer advice to those who face a similar problem. Your reflection is the beginning stage of explaining the lesson learned.

Analyze the Story's Significance

The narrative you have written obviously means something to you or you would have written about something else. However, that does not always mean other people are interested. In your conclusion, you should consider the question every reader has the right to ask, "so what?" Analyze for yourself why this event is significant, and consider why anyone else would care. Is it a universal story that we have all been through? Is it a story that can be told on several levels with layers of meaning? Is it a funny illustration of age-old wisdom? Once you have a compelling reason, include it in your paragraph's conclusion.

Use Emotions

Your emotions about the situation should come through in your final statement. Don't be a cold fish if you are writing about a tragic lesson you learned. Don't leave out the humiliation (or humor) if you learned a lesson about embarrassing situations. How did the consequences of your actions affect you? Remember how you felt in that moment you learned your lesson and put it in your reflection. If you are writing fiction, incorporate your character's emotions.

Present the Moral

Every story, be it personal or fictional, has a message that is born out of the author or character's reflection. If you are only writing one paragraph, your final statement should make that message clear. This statement of the moral or lesson is the equivalent of the thesis statement in an essay, or the lead in a news article. It makes your point or message known. It should incorporate all the elements mentioned before: reflection, analysis and emotion. If you have followed these guidelines you should have an excellent conclusion for your narrative paragraph.

About the Author

Based in central Florida, J. Jeremy Dean has written for 16 years and has written news and entertainment articles for "The Daily Commercial" in Leesburg, Fla. In 2002, he won the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors award for criticism. Dean holds a professional writing bachelor's degree from Glenville State College and a master's of education degree from National Louis University.

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