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Questions tagged [plot-structure]

This tag is for questions regarding the plot structure of a fictional work, such as novels, screenplays, or radio dramas.

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How do you find an ending to a partially finished plan for a novel?

My planning process is beginning to take a little more form now and I have a good amount of ideas, characters and wotnot to begin writing (knowing me I won't and I'll procrastinate but I digress). The ...
BubbleQueen's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
84 views

I need help writing a murder scene in first person [closed]

So the chapter starts like this: I continued to sip my coffee as he choked on his own blood. It was bitter - both the coffee and the look permanently etched onto his face. I want to write a seamless ...
Dexxxie's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
84 views

What is the difference between the points in a three-act structure

I've recently come across the three-act structure, and it seems pretty helpful. My only confusion is that a few of the points in each act look fairly similar. Here is the version of the three-act ...
BubbleQueen's user avatar
1 vote
5 answers
175 views

Are there any theories as to what makes a story's premise good or compelling?

John Truby, in Anatomy of Story, says you shouldn't write a story that doesn't have an exciting premise. But what makes a premise good, bad, boring, compelling, or exciting? This is what Truby says ...
Jude Zambarakji's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
107 views

How to Structure a Series of Books? Can the Hero's Journey be Used?

I'm working on a franchise universe that will form the base for a wide range of interconnected stories told via different media. I plan to loosely base each separate storyline on the concept of the ...
Marcus C.'s user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
118 views

A cool side character who knows their place

I have a question that may shake my story up a bit. So I'm going for a mix of Faust and Dorian Gray with a very violent tone that's set in modern times. Now nearing finishing my outline/synopsis, I ...
6FarGap3's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to make a fiction more visualizable by readers?

I was reading through Agatha Christie's novels and I found that she literally made me visualize everything in the plot. How does she do that?
Riotheavn 's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
105 views

How do I handle a backstory for a surprise revealed at the climactic scene?

I am writing a story, which involves the main character springing a big and dramatic surprise on their adversary in court. A large part of the story involves the explanation/backstory of how he came ...
user17760's user avatar
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0 answers
63 views

What are some famous writing advice such as "How to write novels/plays/screenplay" books published in the 1960's-1980's?

So the background is that I've been doing this mini project trying to track down a plot diagram origin for Antigone which was made in the 20th century and after exhausting JSTOR, NYPL, and my Local ...
Kim Yoonmi--Surname first's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
173 views

What is an inciting incident?

I've been struggling to find a clear definition of what exactly an inciting incident is. According to Masterclass, an inciting incident is: The inciting incident of a story is the event that sets the ...
Jude Zambarakji's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
209 views

How to slow down plot in slowburn romance?

My current work in progress is a slow burn romance between two characters who do not believe in love in their own way. MC simply does not believe in it due to bad experiences being proven, and LI (...
L'Yana James's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
73 views

What is necessary to hide your antagonist’s dirty deeds in plain sight before the big unmasking in 1POV?

This could be essentially the opposite of the question here, about introducing evil characters before they’ve done anything evil. I’m showing the “questionable” activities of a character before ...
Vogon Poet's user avatar
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6 votes
9 answers
1k views

I’m feeling overwhelmed about writing a novel, can anyone help?

I’ve always wanted to write a book. I’ve finally gained enough courage to attempt to write a small novel, 100-150 pages. I’m 13, which I’ve learned is a small problem. I hate to say it, but I’m just ...
Liz's user avatar
  • 69
0 votes
3 answers
469 views

What's the difference between a fantasy mystery novel and an adventure novel?

I'm setting out to write a mystery that is firmly rooted in the fantasy genre. The MC time travels to another historical era, where the MC has to solve a multi-faceted mystery (having both ...
Laura 's user avatar
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1 answer
257 views

What is the difference between the 5-Act structure and the 6-Act structure of storytelling?

There is a YouTube channel called 6-Act Structure, which I will be citing as a reference, run by an Marshall Dotson who wrote The Story Structure Secret: Actions and Goals. The author argues in favor ...
Jude Zambarakji's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
120 views

Does anybody know a good book on writing novels that covers complex storyweaving, multiplots, or parallel plotting?

Does anybody know a good book on writing novels that covers complex storyweaving, multiplots, or parallel plotting? I have a large collection of how-to-write manuals for screen and novel writing. ...
thinkboxer's user avatar
-3 votes
3 answers
225 views

How can I further develop this warrior fantasy story of mine? [closed]

My fantasy story is about an 18-year old knight who was trained from 5-years old to 18-years old as a knight. He is an expert when it comes to using a two-handed double-edged longsword as a weapon. He ...
James Lange's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
155 views

Properly writing satire/parodies

For a while, there were many good satires/parodies, such as Naked Gun, Hot Shots, and the early Scary movie films. However, we see them beginning more in decline, and also the rise of so many terrible ...
Crafter's user avatar
  • 505
1 vote
1 answer
146 views

Handling extremely long narratives

For a video game I will make in the future, I am for now trying to write out the entire story for it. However, it ended up being an extremely long fantasy epic. For all the events, story arcs, and ...
Crafter's user avatar
  • 505
1 vote
4 answers
242 views

What Kind of Plot Do I Have?

For quite a while I worked on writing a novel. After that went poorly, I tried to plot it. This too went poorly, but now, on the second attempt, it’s going pretty well. There’s just one problem. I ...
Lea's user avatar
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4 votes
3 answers
917 views

Would a real location for a book be more intriguing than a fictional setting?

I am a beginner to writing, so not sure exactly how to base the book I've started to write. I want it to be a real cozy romantic book where the characters kind of live in a cobble stoned village with ...
Elysia's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
275 views

How to write a good coup d'état scene?

I'm writing a story with a coup d'état scene where a free nation's government is betrayed and supplanted by a new tyrannical government; and thus, I'd like to know how quality coup d'état scenes are ...
Jarren_Takar's user avatar
9 votes
1 answer
3k views

Is there a method to determining how many books long your series needs to be?

I set out to write a trilogy, and feel my characters, world, and story are complex enough to warrant it. However, the more I dig into it, I’m sensing three books isn’t enough. But it will be a huge ...
a.m.d.'s user avatar
  • 399
3 votes
1 answer
699 views

How "resolved" do things need to be at the end of the first book of a trilogy?

Without going into detail... I'm trying to decide when to end the first book of my trilogy. There are two options that seem natural to me, but one feels more exciting and allows me to drag the tension ...
a.m.d.'s user avatar
  • 399
0 votes
3 answers
179 views

What ways can be used to make a story secretly horror

I am trying to write the story for a game. It starts off well, only to end up really being horror. The goal is supposed to slowly become like that, but without the player figuring it out until it is ...
Crafter's user avatar
  • 505
12 votes
6 answers
6k views

When is it too late to introduce major characters?

Would you consider it too late to introduce major characters at the midpoint of book 1 in a trilogy? By major characters I mean characters that aren’t the protagonist, don’t have POV chapters (my book ...
a.m.d.'s user avatar
  • 399
0 votes
2 answers
138 views

Does the plot always have to be in proportion to a normal novel?

I am presently writing a novel, but it is going to be incredibly large (over 200,000 words when complete). I am aware that I will need to cut a lot of sections, but I'll be worrying about that later. ...
Wyvern123's user avatar
  • 1,734
1 vote
1 answer
168 views

Structuring TV episodes that each have a movie-long screenplay

TV shows nowadays are elaborate, lasting 45 minutes or more per episode, with each episode being a full-blown movie in itself, since they have their own screenplay the length of a Hollywood film. What ...
user610620's user avatar
-1 votes
2 answers
94 views

Are flash-forwards ever used as literary devices?

Flashbacks are common in books and movies. People only perceive linear time in that they only have knowledge of the past, even when those memories might seem to be artificially planted. What are the ...
user610620's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
76 views

Are there different types of plot revelation?

In the movie Sixth Sense, the revelation was that the child knew all along that his counselor was a ghost. The same director-writer use this literary device again in the finale of the movie ...
user610620's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
69 views

When do you have too many plot arcs?

I have a story which could fit nearly any genre and still be engaging, and often times the back cover synopsis likes to brag about multiple elements, like "It has suspense, drama, rib-splitting ...
Vogon Poet's user avatar
  • 1,112
2 votes
1 answer
159 views

Can revealing the series finale to open the series be effective?

Considering the Marvel film Deadpool II we open up with Deadpool detonating himself on a warehouse full of explosives, and then he tells the story on how we got there. That was one "book," ...
Vogon Poet's user avatar
  • 1,112
1 vote
0 answers
139 views

Is the bildungsroman dead for contemporary audiences?

My story can't hide the fact that it is bildungsroman, but there really are few linear year-by-year character reveals on the shelves today. Nothing like The Curious Life of Benjamin Button is coming ...
Vogon Poet's user avatar
  • 1,112
8 votes
4 answers
3k views

How do I know if my plotline is boring?

This is a question that often comes to my mind while writing. I can't know whether I should respect the sequence of events chronologically as they happened or try to include backstories/flashbacks. ...
Nour Fourti's user avatar
1 vote
5 answers
652 views

I want to write a magical story about witches and wizards but not make it like harry potter [closed]

I want the premise to be that throughout the 20th century, witches and wizards have faced a steep decline in numbers and due to the Cold War, secrecy has become more important, but with the fast ...
user52912's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
73 views

Alternating time-frames and seemingly non related chapters

Chapter 1. A child is kidnapped, her friend (same age) is the protagonist is mentioned, she trie so send him a letter but it never reaches him. Chapter 2. Takes place 10 years later but doesn't ...
WillyA's user avatar
  • 41
9 votes
5 answers
1k views

What to avoid when writing distant and inconsequential POVs?

I'm currently writing a sci-fi novel, where we've got some huge, solar system-spanning stuff going on, with huge stakes. I've got four POVs that are directly involved with this, whose decisions matter ...
A. Kvåle's user avatar
  • 4,043
1 vote
2 answers
175 views

What is the difference between a horror and genre shift horror?

I think I have an ok good idea of what makes up a horror piece. But recently I've come across the term genre shift and wondered what exactly makes something not straight up horror but a piece that ...
FrontEnd's user avatar
  • 235
2 votes
2 answers
153 views

Novels with big time jump

In a father/son novel, there are two parts to the story: half the book follows the protagonist for a few years. Part two is twenty five years later. The story transitions with a 10 - 12 page narrative ...
Sid47's user avatar
  • 74
2 votes
3 answers
139 views

Least confusing way to structure 2 plot lines merging when one starts several years before the other

My story has two POV characters, Delilah and Jack, who start separate and meet ~ 1/4 of the way though. Delilah's story starts several years before the Jack's and is the entire reason he even has a ...
aurorajack's user avatar
10 votes
3 answers
2k views

How do I give characters logical reasons to be with each other?

It's an annoying problem with writing - I've got a bunch of characters that I've written, how do I keep them together for the adventure I want them to go on? In some stories, this can be quite ...
WasatchWind's user avatar
2 votes
5 answers
1k views

Denouement vs Resolution

What is the difference between a denouement and a resolution? Are they synonymous?
Theodore Soriano's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
350 views

Does Blake Snyder's Save the Cat only apply to a story as a whole?

I'm curious to know if it can apply to an episode, volume, season, or an individual book of a trilogy. If it does apply, how do you apply those individual episodes into a whole story whilst following ...
Dewux's user avatar
  • 21
0 votes
2 answers
126 views

Introducing suspense devices when protagonist is nearly omnipotent

Perhaps the most formulaic plot framework has the protagonist as an underdog where he/she must overcome incredible odds. Simply to illustrate, consider: LotR (they are but mere hobbits). While the ...
Arash Howaida's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
128 views

Should I jump right into the story without MC introduction?

I'm writing a crime story. Basically it begins with a friend of the main character asking him for a meeting and then introducing the case to him. What I would like to do is to show something about the ...
Rico's user avatar
  • 609
0 votes
2 answers
472 views

Plot that focuses on non-violent conflict in fantasy setting. Examples and how is it possible in storytelling?

I'm focused on creating a story where I can explore cultural differences and highlight interactions that showcase Emotional Intelligence. So many worlds center around violence as a main means of ...
Thomas F. Webber's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
131 views

What is my story structure?

I am starting to write a story and have made an outline of the major plot points. I am looking at the outline but am not sure which story structure it follows. My outline goes like this: Quick ...
Savannah's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
127 views

Linear beginning or flash-forwards? [duplicate]

I'm writing this fantasy story that focuses on two main characters. The story was supposed to start with the male protagonist. So, in the first four chapters or so, we get to know his current ...
Erin Tesden's user avatar
12 votes
10 answers
6k views

How to make a story entertaining with an almost invincible character?

I'm writing this fantasy story with the MC slowly transforming into a non-human being. Which makes him invulnerable... Or at least quite resistant. The problem is that I'm still not fully sure which ...
Erin Tesden's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
91 views

Is using the layout of anothers published work in danger of plagiarisim if nothing else is the same?

I started writing a book that uses the ‘layout’ or ‘style’ of another very popular book. I started it as a joke, but then fell in love with the characters and the idea. There is nothing the same in my ...
Plot squatter's user avatar