7

I would like to go ahead and create

We have and it seems reasonable to have a matched set. There does not appear to be a generic term that covers both. I discovered the problem when editing a question and seeing there was no tag. Is there a place for an epilogue in a standalone novel?

I do not currently have my own question about epilogues but I am sure I will in the future.

On a quick scan, there are currently 10 questions that could use this tag.


I have created with the following wiki (yes, I'm aware it should have been epilogues but I couldn't change it):

This tag should be used for questions about a epilogue in a written piece of work. An epilogue, like a prologue, is a section of a book that stands outside the narrative, as a kind of commentary or supplementary addition. For questions about the conclusion of a book, use [ending]. Also see [prologue].

  • There's an ending tag, with 33 questions. What questions would go under [epilogue] but not under [ending]? – Galastel Mar 25 at 19:34
  • @Galastel Why do we have both prologue and openings? – Cyn Mar 25 at 19:36
  • Fair point. Interestingly, none of the "epilogue" questions used "ending", so that too might be an indicator. (I'm still not convinced either way, lean slightly towards "ok, why not?") – Galastel Mar 25 at 19:48
  • 5
    @Galastel Epilogues and endings aren't the same thing. Most people consider an epilogue something that comes after the book ends. Ditto with prologue and beginning/opening. I would say both prologues and epilogues are specific types of chapters. Just like you wouldn't call an index or bibliography an ending or TOC an opening. – Cyn Mar 25 at 19:52
  • 1
    OK, you've convinced me. :) – Galastel Mar 25 at 19:57
  • Having prologue, epilogue is very reasonable to have – NofP Mar 25 at 21:28
2

I'll just copy your comment here to preserve it (comments are temporary):

Epilogues and endings aren't the same thing. Most people consider an epilogue something that comes after the book ends. Ditto with prologue and beginning/opening. I would say both prologues and epilogues are specific types of chapters. Just like you wouldn't call an index or bibliography an ending or TOC an opening.

I agree with Galastel:

OK, you've convinced me. :)

And seeing how we currently have , and it's only reasonable to add . I vote for creating the tag .

Here my usual list, just for (my personal) completeness sake:

  1. Ask yourself how many questions you have about this topic: is this probably the only one or is this a topic you want to ask about more regularly?
    • Epilogue is definitely an important part in writing. Plus.
  2. Look through the existing questions: how many already use the word or similar words and might profit from the tag?
    • 10 questions is definitely enough to start thinking about a tag. Plus.
  3. Look through the existing tags: is one of them already encompassing what you are trying to convey?
    • See the comments above. Plus.
  4. Look through Meta: have there been similar requests or precedent cases where something similar has been created/denied?
  5. Think about the sites scope: do you think that a lot of people will profit from these tags when they are asking questions about the specific topic of the site you are on?
    • Yes, people looking through a writing focused Q&A will certainly profit from being able to more quickly get an overview over questions about epilogues. Plus.
  6. Think about the tag's scope: is it well-defined and obvious to users coming to the site?
    • Yes, though we might want to update the tag wikis to reflect the short comment discussion under this question. Plus.

Looks good, now we come to tag wikis.

tag wiki excerpt:

An opening story that has the goal to give the reader a feeling for the world you are creating. The Prologue is written in-character.

full tag wiki:

You should use this tag for questions that concern themselves with writing an opening story or introduction with the goal of presenting information about the world the reader is about to enter. Often a prologue ties in with the main story, for example by presenting a different point of view or establishing some events that happened before the main story happened.

A prologue is written in-character, for example from the normal narrator perspective or from the perspective of a character. If you are writing from your perspective as an author this would be called a "foreword".

tag wiki excerpt:

An ending story with the goal of presenting information about the world some time after the main story has ended written from an in-character perspective.

full tag wiki:

You should use this tag for questions that concern themselves with writing an ending story with the goal of presenting information about the world after the main story has ended, for example by skipping some time into the future of the protagonists or related characters.

An epilogue is written in-character, for example from the normal narrator perspective or from the perspective of a character. If you are writing from your perspective as an author this would be called a "afterword".

tag wiki excerpt:

A general term for chapters you would write before the main story, such as a foreword, prologue or acknowledgements.

full tag wiki:

This tag should be used for questions when you are asking about something that you want to write before the main story begins. Everything that could be written before "Chapter 1" falls under this tag.

tag wiki excerpt:

A general term for chapters you would write after the main story, such as an afterword, epilogue or acknowledgements.

full tag wiki:

This tag should be used for questions when you are asking about something that you want to write after the main story ends. Everything that could be written after "END" falls under this tag.

  • Are the prologue/foreword and epilogue/afterword distinctions meaningful? Especially when we don't have tags for the latter? (I'm pretty sure I've seen prologues and epilogues that don't follow the "in-character" guidance of these wikis.) – Monica Cellio Mar 25 at 22:08
  • @MonicaCellio Argh I screwed up! I created the tag epilogue then went to add wiki for it and realized it should have been epilogues to match prologues. I removed the new tag from the single post I put it on and tried to add the correct one but got a system error. So I stuck with the singular and created wiki. Can the name be changed? Or? Thanks. – Cyn Mar 25 at 23:13
  • @Cyn done (with delays for caching, apparently). But it looks like the wikis didn't follow, or maybe you didn't do those yet. – Monica Cellio Mar 25 at 23:15
  • Thanks! The wiki is in there. writing.stackexchange.com/tags/epilogue/info – Cyn Mar 25 at 23:18

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