An epilogue is the last section of a piece of literature or film. It can be used to further explain a story or reveal more information about the characters.

In this guide, we are going to be talking about the basics of epilogues, including how they can be used in film, in literature and in plays.

You’ll also see some examples of epilogues from popular books and popular movies.

An epilogue is a final chapter at the end of a story that often serves to reveal the fates of the characters.

The word epilogue comes from Greek and means “conclusion,” “result,” or “outcome.”

Epilogues are common in many forms of fiction, including novels, short stories, plays, and films.

They are also sometimes found in nonfiction works like biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs.

What Is an epilogue

What Is an epilogue?

An epilogue is a short section at the end of a creative work that is supposed to be read or watched after the main work has been completed.

In a novel, it can be thought of as the short chapter at the end, or the final thoughts or reflection of the protagonist.

In a film, it is often placed at the end and can add to the story or change how you look at things.

In movies and novels, the epilogue usually shows the fate of the main characters.

In some cases, it serves as a hint at what will happen in the sequel. Epilogues can also be used to change the tone of a film or story – they can be funny and light-hearted, or they can be sad and nostalgic.


What Is An Epilogue?

The term epilogue comes from the Greek word ‘epi-’ meaning ‘after’ and ‘logos’ meaning ‘word’. It is a concluding passage added to the end of creative work.

An epilogue allows an author to add further information or explanation about the main story, and can also help tie up a loose end in the main story.

In some instances, an epilogue can act as a bridge that links one story to another. It can also provide closure to a particular situation.

An epilogue can also refer to an additional scene in a play or a movie that comes after the main story has ended.

In such cases, it is referred to as an afterword, postscript, or coda. We often used interchangeably these terms when referring to literary works.

The term “postscript” usually refers to an additional section at the end of a letter or speech which adds new information that was not included in the original message.

However, postscripts may be used in some literary works as well.

An epilogue is a literary device that can be defined as the concluding section of a literary work. It’s a tool often used by writers to bring closure to their works. For instance, an epilogue may be:

  • Offer additional information regarding the story.
  • Provide further development of characters or plot.
  • Add insight into what happened after the main story ended.

The function of an epilogue is not limited to bringing closure. We can also use it for other purposes, such as:

  • To comment on events or themes within the story.
  • To provide additional information about characters or plot.
  • To make connections between a text and its audience.

It’s also common for an author or filmmaker to use an epilogue to address his/her readers or viewers directly.

Epilogue vs. Afterword

One of the most recognizable differences between an epilogue and an afterword is the purpose each serves. While both features are tacked onto the end of a written piece, they have unique roles. The epilogue provides a peek at future events or insight into what happened to certain characters.

It can also explain the inspiration for the writing piece, or speculate on future outcomes following the story. The afterword goes over previous notes, or reference sources and gives credit to those who helped with the editing of a particular project. Each can be used effectively in literary pieces.

An epilogue is a chapter at the end of a book written in the same style and spirit as the rest of the book. It often provides a look back at key events or characters in the story, sometimes resolving loose ends and filling in gaps.

The word is derived from “Epi Lapselle”, short for “Epilogos” meaning afterwords.

An afterword is also a chapter found at the end of a book. It is written by someone other than the primary author instead of the author: it provides an opportunity for people not directly involved with creating the book to add further information about the ideas presented in it.

It rarely reveals anything that happens after or is otherwise undisclosed in the plot, but further explores its implications.

Purpose Of An Epilogue

The epilogue is the concluding section of a book or a movie. It follows the end of the plot, acts, or the main idea of whatever you’re reading.

Its purpose is to add extra closure after the main course of the story, and it gives a feeling of satisfaction to the entire tale.

An epilogue will not tie up every single loose end; this does not need to be done as the reader has already had his/her mind put at rest by previous events or because s/he can look back and make his conclusions.

In terms of form, adaptations vary from author to author, but there are some common features that you should watch out for when reading.

Like a postscript in a letter, an epilogue gives you more information about what happened to the characters after the action of the story is over. It can include an evaluation of what happened, an explanation of why it happened, or just simply more exposition on any unresolved issues from the piece.

The purpose of an epilogue is to reinforce the idea of why the story was told and to create closure.

Effective Epilogues In Film

The epilogue is the best place for authors to dive into the nitty-gritty details of their writing process. However, this is not always the case. 

The closing scene of a film captures the feelings that are inspired by the entire story. There are many ways in which an epilogue can be effective, but they all serve the same purpose. 

They tie up the loose ends and provide an overall satisfactory ending. Here we will look at some of the more memorable scenes among a list of other gems.

An epilogue is a literary device that brings closure to a work of literature. An epilogue may be as simple as one or two sentences or can comprise an entire chapter. 

Many times, the mere presence of an epilogue in a literary work shows that the writer intends the audience to take away from the experience of reading his or her work, or watching his or her film, a message that he or she feels needs further emphasis, elaboration, and clarification.

A good epilogue shows the effectiveness of its method by using a combination of common linguistic devices, such as repetition and/or parallelism (two separate lines having the same thought but with different words) and/or a narrative technique called “wraparound” (where characters may reexamine past events).


When To Use An Epilogue (And When Not To)

Just as every good story deserves a finale, so does every marketing message. Whether you’re crafting an advertisement, a speech, or anything in between, the epilogue is “a statement of how consumers will benefit from using your company’s product,” according to the Purdue University Online Writing Lab.

The epilogue is usually placed at the end of a marketing message to let consumers understand how using your product or service will solve their problems and make their lives better.

Yet, as we have seen from our examples, we can use epilogues for more than just wrapping up the main storyline. They can also lay the groundwork for a sequel, present an additional issue in the story, or even provide inside information on the characters.

Epilogues can be tricky. When do they naturally belong in a paper, and when have they been shoehorned in clumsily? Using examples from published articles and excerpts, this lesson will tell you when epilogues bring a piece of writing together and when they are superfluous.

How Do I Start An Epilogue?

Getting started with the Epilogue is quite simple.

The first step is writing an outline. The 2nd & 3rd steps are the hardest, but writing a synopsis can give you a better grasp of the storyline of your book.

Before you write each chapter, make sure you have an ending in mind! 

Checks each chapter stage to make sure that nothing is left on the table. Comes with a valuable report of resources including things like recommended reading lists, links to blogs, articles, podcasts, and other ebooks.

Don’t forget to read other books so you get inspiration for how they end their chapters. You don’t have to write everything in the first person (I, me, we) which might make your book easier to read if you alternate between 1st and 3rd person, for example.

How Long Is An Epilogue?

An epilogue is a time that most people wouldn’t think to read because it happens after all the exciting stuff has already happened. So, how long is an epilogue?

It’s one of our most frequently asked questions. You could write a book on it, but we’ll keep things simple for you. An epilogue is a brief paragraph, which should be included in your story if you must have an additional concluding section after the last chapter.

An epilogue is a written section at the end of a story. It helps to tell what happened to all the characters after the main plot ends. If a character is on trial for murder in your short story, you could use an epilogue to foreshadow further trouble by having the character say, “I’m going to have to frame someone for this now.”

If you’re watching a popular movie, it’s usually 5-10 minutes at most (not including end credits), and if you’re reading a popular book, 1 or 2 pages is standard. But if you’re lucky, there might be a longer epilogue in store for you.

Wondering Whether Your Story Should Include An Epilogue?

Whether your story should include an epilogue is something every writer needs to decide on his/her own. Many stories contain epilogues because they are considered a part of the main storyline and make the story flow better. In writing, an epilogue can be a very effective tool to wrap up or summarize the story.

In Hollywood, epilogues are used frequently. Most television shows and movies end with an epilogue. It’s the last scene, which should tie up all the loose ends. This tool should help you decide whether an epilogue would make sense for your story and show you how to craft one.

Epilogues are an important part of creative nonfiction. In nonfiction writing, an epilogue can be a grace note, a final thought delivered in a memorable way. It’s the perfect place to tie things together, share an appreciative insight, or serve up a closing twist and leave your readers hungry for more.

Nevertheless, it’s also a good idea to ask yourself whether you truly need an epilogue before committing words to paper. If you don’t think your work deserves the honor and responsibility of receiving a special message all its own, it probably doesn’t.

A Book Should Work Without An Epilogue

Who says a book has to have an epilogue? Isn’t the final chapter enough?

In “A Book Should Work Without An Epilogue”, author Jane Friedman argues that writers should throw out their preconceived ideas about what a book is—and embrace the fun side of the literary process.

“A Book Should Work Without An Epilogue” presents in-depth interviews with twelve contemporary designers and bookmakers, who have used books to explore ideas and tell stories in unexpected ways.

The contributing designers give insight into the thinking behind their books and explain their artistic process to the reader.

The book offers advice for writers about how to structure and outline their novels. As the title implies, this book doesn’t include an epilogue but might include a chapter on how the author wrote a blog post without one.

It’s still in editing, so this is just a mockup!

A Book Should Work Without An Epilogue says that it should not be used to cover up a writer’s inability to express an idea well, or as a place where a writer can dump on the reader — explaining furiously what he has already communicated clearly.

So Should You Write An Epilogue?

In conclusion, when deciding whether to write an Epilogue, you must decide if it is a crucial feature of your story. Bryce and Daniel both wanted to let their audience know that despite the main characters being separated for so long, they were finally reunited.

Both stories had very different reasons for writing Epilogues. Overall, choosing not to write an epilogue is perfectly acceptable, but should be done without haste.

We often forget epilogues in today’s modern novels. But they come in handy sometimes. They help connect readers with the character. It’s not a must to have an epilogue, but it can break up action at the end and wrap up loose ends nicely.

Well, if you’re like most writers, you’ll want to know what happened next. And now you can find out. Your tale may have been the basis of a children’s book that won an award or become a best seller.

It may have been retold as a fable or made into an animated movie. Or maybe it simply inspired your students to get excited about reading.