Monthly Archives: August 2011

Why All Good Stories Must Have A Happy Ending

There are many stories in the world. Stories on all types of topics ranging from your sappy romance between two saplings in love to the most violently scarey attack of the rabid bunny horror films. The truth of the matter is, between all these stories, only the good ones have happy endings. Now of course how good a story is ultimately depends on many factors such as: originality, depth, tone, twists, understandability, meaning, and of course its conclusion. My purposes here is not to discuss all the aspects of story, except for one: the conclusion. No matter how good all aspects of a story are, its ending holds the final trump card which dictates how good the story really is. I would also argue that for the ending of the story to be anything but happy, it isn’t a good story.

Let us first start out by defining the word Story. A story is simply the telling of a particular sequence of events, fiction or not, that communicates a certain message (known or unknown). Every story communicates something (even if not intended by the author). If a sequence of events can be communicated in a way that no meaning can be derived from it, then it isn’t a story. Likewise if one just blathers incoherent and meaningless words, it isn’t a story. All stories have structure. They all have a beginning, middle, and end. They all have a subject and, like I said before, a meaning.

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