Every writer knows creating a great lead (lede) is key to a great article. It piques an audience’s interest and pulls them in for you to deliver the goods. What some writers fail to realize is a good ending or conclusion is just as important.
We’ve all been there – one minute you’re reading a piece, zooming right along and then it just trails off… An article is not a novel, it shouldn’t have a cliffhanger.
When writing a newspaper article, there are a few set standards for finishing up a conclusion, such as a final quote. Features have more room for creativity. Unlike a news article (particularly with inverted pyramid style), the ending is not in danger of getting cut off by a copy editor because of space issues. Depending on the type of feature you’ve written, you need to decide what you want readers to take away from the piece.
Do you want to leave them with a thoughtful quote? What about the end of the story – what happens? What is likely to happen next? Is there an opportunity to provide an update or give them information to take action? Blogs will often end with a question to spur readers into commenting.
An article shouldn’t end simply because there is no more information. An article needs to end when the ‘W’s’ of writing are satisfied. The conclusion should leave the reader with something to think about and a sense of finality – as far as the article is concerned. They shouldn’t look at the bottom of the page for the next page arrow or a note on where the rest of the article picks up.
Is this article finished? Why or why not? If not, write a conclusion for it below! Got any tips on creating a great conclusion? Tell us below.