I’ve always thought of the story climax as the boss fight. The heroes go up against the Big Bad of the story, and there’s fights, and explosions, and bloodshed, and the heroes get beat up–and then pull a reversal and save the day.
Looking back over my library of fanfics, I’ve written volcanic eruptions, dangling bridges over waterfalls, fleeing ticking time bombs, hacked software in the brain, ambushes, swordfights, insanity, slowly dying of exposure, and falling from orbit. Yeah man, you name it, I’ve written it.
So as I undertake the fun of writing new stuff in an original universe, I’ve been afraid that all my good bossfights were used up.
One in particular gave me problems. The story itself was basically a tour of this one fantasy world, glimpses of its politics and monsters, and so forth. And the bossfight–against a giant legless dragon–took place entirely in one room. It felt anticlimactic.
So I started thinking about what kind of climax might work better. I still wanted them to fight the dragon–so what if I pulled a Frank Peretti and trashed all these environments we’d spent so much time building earlier in the book?
So I wrote it. And it was infinitely satisfying. I now know why in Frank Peretti’s novels, the whole freaking world goes nuts and comes crashing down. Because it’s AWESOME.
How do you write the climax of your story? Do you like the superhero-movie kinds with big explosions and chases and fireworks? Have you ever had a climax you weren’t happy with and had to fix up?