Imaginative Writing – openings and endings

Beginnings and Endings – The beginning of your imaginative writing needs to engage the reader immediately and set the tone for the rest of your writing.

creative writing

You can do this with: a vivid description, dialogue, a mystery, or conflict or danger.

Here are some options:

A vivid description to immediately set the tone and show off your skills in figurative writing.

Glistening and gleaming in the evening haze, the sea spread out before us like a silver carpet.  Waves lapped gently at the sides of the boat as we sailed silently along in the cool, salty breeze.

With dialogue to help provide the reader an immediate idea about one or more of the characters.

‘I’m scared; what do we do now?’ Shadows flickered on sarah’s terrified face as she whispered her fears. 

‘Nothing,’ he hissed. ‘Keep quiet and just wait.’

With a mystery – an engaging way to start if you want to use flashbacks.

I know i shouldn’t have taken it.  but i did.  i’ll be sorry for the rest of my miserable little life.  it was only a tiny thing – but it caused so much trouble.

With conflict or danger – an effective way to create a sense of tension from the start.

I froze.  Someone was in the house.  i coldly see them.  But i knew they were there.


  • Use the question below to write the opening.  Experiment with the options above.
  • Write about a time when you, or someone you know, were at home alone.  Your response could be real or imagined.


The Ending

The ending is the final impression the reader has of your writing.  Follow these rules for a strong ending:

  • Plan each stage of your writing in advance – you will be less likely to run out of time and rush at the end.
  • Spend time thinking about the tone of your ending – will it be happy, sad or funny?
  • Craft your final sentence carefully – this is the last but of writing the examiner will read.
  • Avoid sudden mood changes – if the mood of your writing has been tense throughout, a happy ending is unlikely to work.
  • Avoid ending with a cliche like ‘it was all a dream’ – use your imagination.

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