Ben Montgomery

Sounding the Gong: How to Craft an Ending that Reverberates

October 12, 2017
7 p.m. CDT

What is it about the last page or paragraph of a wonderful story that sticks it hard in the minds of readers for weeks or months or even a lifetime? In this class, we'll analyze great endings from fiction and nonfiction, and talk about why they work and what we can do to close the door like the masters.

Ben Montgomery is an enterprise reporter for the Tampa Bay Times and founder of the narrative journalism website He's also author of the New York Times-bestselling Grandma Gatewood's Walk: The Inspiring Story of the Woman Who Saved the Appalachian Trail and Leper Spy: The Story of an Unlikely Hero of World War II, both from Chicago Review Press.

Montgomery grew up in Oklahoma and studied journalism at Arkansas Tech University, where he played defensive back for the football team, the Wonder Boys. He worked for the Courier in Russellville, Arkansas, the Standard-Times in San Angelo, Texas, the Times Herald-Record in New York's Hudson River Valley, and the Tampa Tribune before joining the Times in 2006.

In 2010, he was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in local reporting and won the Dart Award and Casey Medal for a series called "For Their Own Good," about abuse at Florida's oldest reform school. He lives in Tampa with his wife, Jennifer, and three children.

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