Bookending

Skill: Bookending– A technique for ending a writing piece, in which an idea that was brought up earlier in the piece is returned to.  Sometimes referred to as a frame story.

Read the Time Magazine Article about the roller coaster Goliath.  Notice the way the story is structured. The author begins with a little bit about the roller coaster Goliath.  Next he is on line waiting to ride the coaster.  The story switches focus and discusses other large roller coasters and coaster technology.  Finally at the end, he returns to his riding of the roller coaster.  He has created a “bookend” structure, in which an idea/situation is introduced, departed from, and then ultimately returned to.  This creates closure in the writing piece.

Examples from movies:

The Princess Bride- The story starts with a grandfather reading a story to his sick grandson.  The actual movie is the story, but every once in a while the “bookend” or “frame story” is reintroduced.  The movie ends with the grandfather and the boy finishing the book.

The Wizard of Oz- The story begins with a tornado in Kansas.  Dorothy is knocked unconscious and awakens in the land of Oz.  The story ends with Dorothy awakening from a dream back in Kansas.

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