The 3 Act Story Structure - And Writing Stories: Part III

In part 1 and part 2, we've discussed the first two acts of a 3-act story structure. I used Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone as the example media that I broke down. I've also interspersed some Star Trek in there, too.

In this article, I'm tackling the final 3rd Act which tends to be as short as the first and is generally focused on resolving all of the issues and conflicts brought up in Act I and Act II.

Act III - Resolution

Twist (optional)

Revelation/false death


You might think that the big fight happens at the climax but you'd be wrong. Right before the highest emotional point of a story comes the rapid onset and heightening of stakes. This is also a stage where the last secrets are revealed.

Questions to ask:

  • What is the antagonist's true strength and how is it shown in this section?
  • How can we make the reader doubt that the protagonist will win?
  • Are the characters caught off-guard or prepared?