Samantha says: Hi. I’m not exactly a teenager yet. I’m 12 and I’ve been writing a bunch of stories. Well the problem is every time I get really far into a story, I don’t know how to finish it. Sometimes my chapters are too short also. And when I try to come up with a new idea, I can’t come up with one. Can you please give me some tips or some websites that can help me?
As to how to finish a story, you simply need to resolve your main character’s goal. Every story needs to be about a character chasing after some goal. Maybe they are trying to win a cross country race. Maybe they are trying to solve a mystery. Maybe they are running from a killer. As long as the main character is doing something for a reason. The whole story is to take the main character on the journey of trying to achieve said goal. Then, at the end, they achieve it or they don’t. End of story.
I like to come up with five sentences to help me. To give me a guideline of what to write next. I learned this from Randy Ingermanson, who is a genius. Randy wrote the book Writing Fiction for Dummies. Randy also has a wonderful writing website here: http://www.advancedfictionwriting.com/
Here is Randy’s advice to give you an outline to write your story by:
1. Harry Potter learns that he comes from a wizarding family and begins school at Hogwarts. (Introduction to the story)
2. There he learns that Professor Snape hates him for no good reason. (First major story crisis)
3. After Harry and his friends discover that a giant dog is guarding the way to the Sorcerer’s Stone in a dungeon, they are nearly killed by a troll–set loose, apparently by Professor Snape. (Second major crisis)
4. When they learn that Hagrid gave away the secret of the giant dog to a stranger in exchange for a dragon, they realize that Snape can now reach the Sorcerer’s Stone. (Third major crisis)
5. With Dumbledore gone to London, Harry and his friends do their best to stop Snape–and find a wicked surprise. (Climax and end)
As for how to come up with new ideas, read this post called Planning a Novel? Where to Start. I bet it will give you some good ideas on how to brainstorm.
Hope that helps. 🙂