Hi! I’m Ms Nellie Lim, a teacher at Lil’ but Mighty. For many budding writers, these are always the perennial questions in their heads:
- How should I develop my climax paragraph?
- What should my climax paragraph include?
- In what way can I make the climax paragraph more engaging to my reader?
One of the many common pitfalls when it comes to writing a composition is to have an underdeveloped climax. A climax is the most exciting or high point of the story so an underdeveloped climax would make the story fall short of the reader’s expectations.
In today’s post, let me give you some tips for crafting a climax paragraph that effectively engages the reader. Below are 3 steps you can take when developing the climax paragraph:
Let’s now look closer at each of the steps!
Step #1: Feelings of the main character before and after the problem
First of all, it may be useful for you to consider these questions:
- How did the main character feel in the build-up before witnessing an unexpectedscene?
- How did he feel upon witnessing the scene?
Step #2: What shocking truth did the main character realise / discover?
State specifically what the main character realise that made him feel this way. This can be done by using the character’s internal thoughts. Ask yourself: What were the thoughts running through his head as he processed what was happening?
Step #3: Action chain
For this step, think about the sequence of actions. Remember to also include the reactions of the other characters and the main character’s feelings:
What did the main character do? > How did the other character react? > How did the main character feel? > What happened next?
Let’s now look at how we can apply this 3-step strategy to a given scenario for the topic “Dishonesty”. Pay close attention to the highlighted parts as they correlate to the steps that I have mentioned earlier:
Main character notices a classmate behaving suspiciously during a test/exam. He is shocked to learn that his classmate, a top student and teacher’s pet, is actually cheating.
Can you see how easy it is to apply the 3-step strategy? Next, why don’t you try writing the climax paragraph for this scenario below for the topic “An act of bravery”?
Mother of child screams for help. Sean, the main character, notices a younger child bobbing up and down in the pool. He jumps in to save the child.
Before you begin writing, you may want to think through the planning steps and jot down your ideas:
Feelings of the main character before and after witnessing the young child bobbing up and down in the pool – relaxed (before), his mind raced as knew he needed to act quickly (after)
What was the shocking truth/discovery? – the realisation that the young child was drowning and needed rescue
Step 3: Action chain
> What did the main character do? dived into the pool and swam towards the child
> How did the other character react? clung onto Sean for dear life
> What happened next? paddled back to the side of the pool, other swimmers helped the boy to safety
Notice that in this scenario, it is not necessary to include the feelings of the main character at this point as it was implied earlier in Step 2 and that this rescue happened very quickly in a short span of time.
Now let’s put all these ideas together and form the climax paragraph for this scenario. It may look something like this:
Now that you know how to use the 3-step strategy appropriately, I hope you will apply them in your writing when you are developing the climax paragraph. Do you have other writing tips which have worked for you? Share with us in the comments section below. Till the next time we meet again, adios!
Primary 5 & 6 Creative Writing
– Composition Writing (with 20 Composition Topics covered)
– Situational Writing