I have been trying to write a good plot that's strong for my first novel. However, I have a feeling my plot isn't strong enough. As I began writing, I figured out that a lot of things were just dragging and the pacing was unearthly slow.
My plot is that a teenager is an immigrant from Ireland who will do whatever it takes to make sure animals gain respect with warnings, threats, and even murders of animal abusers. But everything goes downhill when the animals he protects are blamed for the owner's consequences.
The thing is, his story isn't supposed to be action-packed. It's more of a character-driven novel in the light of right and wrong. If I made it full of action, it wouldn't be the same story. But it seems as if all strong plots have somebody kicking the bad guy to oblivion or getting rid of ghosts. When he does kill, it's subtle. When he sends threats, it's subtle. The reactions are mostly met with police and moving; nothing too much until probably 1/3 into a novel.
I just don't know how to make it exciting for the reader without adding super action-filled scenes that will ruin the feel I want for this book. Thanks in advance.