Plotting your final
Adventures in NaNoWriMo

The Final Battle Part 1 NaNoWriMo day 26

The First Victory?

In the final battle part 1, the hero will appear to win, but the victory isn’t complete. Final battles are often in five basic stages.

  1. first wave
  2. retreat
  3. second push
  4. climax
  5. resolution

These are usually interpreted in 2 variations

Plotting the final battle-www.themanuscriptshredder.comA single goal, multiple attacks

  1. Hero experiences an apparent victory
  2. He villain “resurrects” or pushes back
  3. The second attack
  4. Climax
  5. Resolution

We see this in the Lego Movie and the Lego Batman Movie. Emmet comes back from the basement and his goal is to stop the Kragle. We also see evidence that Emmet has completed his character arc because he is now a master builder.

In the Lego Batman Movie, we also see evidence of Batman’s character transformation. He is now working as part of a team.

Multiple Goal Variation

In this version, the hero must achieve two or more distinct objectives before final victory is possible.

  1. Hero achieves the first goal
  2. Antagonistic forces push back
  3. Hero begins second, more difficult battle
  4. Climax
  5. Resolution

We see this version in Inside Out. Joy must first get Sadness back to headquarters before they can start the bigger battle of saving Riley.

There are other possibilities, but these two are the most common. Why? These are more likely to produce a satisfactory ending.

  • only 1 obstacle=victory is too easy
  • Too many obstacles=becomes tedious to the reader.

What to do

  1. Decide which path your hero will take to victory and map out your steps.
  2. Review your research before you begin your battle scene.
    For more tips on writing actions scenes click here
  3. While things are exploding, don’t forget about your character arc. Find a way for your character to demonstrate his new knowledge.

Today is only the beginning of the final battle.

The fight has just begun, but your character’s journey is nearly over. Now everything is in place. This time your hero is ready.

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M.L. Keller is a freelance writer and editor. Her blog "The Manuscript Shredder" is focused on helping emerging writers hone their craft.

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