Questions tagged [plot]

Plot typically refers to the events and their ordering in a work of narrative fiction. Use this tag for questions regarding plotting, outlining, and narrative arcs. Be aware that questions asking users to come up with plot details for you are off-topic.

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32 views

Why would a time traveller be late? [closed]

I am writing a boss fight for a D&D one-shot. The premise is the players are part of a time traveling organization, and are sent back in time to stop a musical spell being cast at a concert in ...
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Is it a good idea to make the actions of my antagonist reasonable?

I'm a good way through writing my fantasy story, and up until now, my antagonist has been portrayed as being a megalomaniac, and my protagonist (and myself) have believed this to be true. However, I ...
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How many plotlines are too many?

I've written a few not-very-good books in the fantasy realm. One struggle I've had is juggling multiple plotlines. For the first book I wrote I wanted to write a twisty, intricate story with a lot ...
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Any Technique to See if Your Idea is Original?

I usually get quite a lot of ideas for stories, but every time I want to develop them into a full fledged story, I get paranoid about how it might not be an original idea, and how it might be ...
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Denouement vs Resolution

What is the difference between a denouement and a resolution? Are they synonymous?
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How can I have a war with no "good" or "evil" side?

I'm conceptualising a story involving two heroes who go on an epic journey and return bitter rivals etc. etc. and form their own forces in a sort of civil war. My issue is that I want them to both be ...
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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 ...
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2answers
62 views

Ways to construct a temporary medieval road block? [closed]

I understand bandit attacks are themselves cliche, but ignoring that for now: Situation: A guy is transporting a shipment of ice from atop a mountain, needs to get to the foothills asap. Cue cliche ...
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Fault in writers logic and how avoid?

So yeah I have seen a situation where what the writer has put makes sense, but after thinking it through there are clear faults in the logic they used. Here's my example A small team is advancing ...
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3answers
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How to avoid using "she" repetitively in action?

I really like to write but I have a problem. I am starting to write about and I want to make it mostly in 3rd person, but I don't know if I can do that and not repeat the prounon she or he a lot. I ...
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Which factors do we need to count to evaluate the standards of short story?

I like writing suspense-based short stories similar to this one on Wattpad, but I don’t know how to assess if my writing is good or meets the expectations of the suspense genre, or if my stories ...
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How do I make it so my story happens in an ambiguous time frame?

Nothing extreme, of course. No mentions of futuristic time-traveling gadgets or teleportation or the like. Or, conversely, nothing that smacks of medieval times or anything that immediately causes a ...
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Should I reveal real location of events in my book?

I wrote a non-released-yet adventure/sf book, in which events take place in a real city I know (actually, this is where I grew up). Most of the places I mentioned there are real, except only for those,...
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How to avoid making the romance in your novel predictable? [duplicate]

I'm currently writing a YA novel, and one of my sublots is a romance between the protagonist (A) and another supporting character (B). I introduce the two to each other early on, and they start out as ...
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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 ...
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Is it possible for "weakness" to be a "virtue" in context?

I'm working on a teen romance. The event is the high school play, the "Sound of Music," in which there are two main contestants for the role of Liesl. They are designated "A" and "B," because those ...
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1answer
89 views

How do you write a geopolitical plot if your novel is short?

How do you write a geopolitical plot if your novel is short? Geopolitical plots tend to be complex, so I am wondering if there are ways to fit the plot into a short novel or make change the formatting ...
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59 views

How to make the main character and a vital person to story meet?

So for my story the main character has to meet a friend who will help them survive. However my problem is the main character is distrusting and the friend is very cautious and a bit selfish. Sort of ...
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139 views

How do you write character development in later entries of a series after relationships become established?

When starting a series there is initially a lot of fertile ground for storytelling because the characters don't know each other very well and are still establishing an equilibrium. As a result, there ...
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2answers
104 views

How can I balance a male character saving his love interest without making the female seem incompetent (and vice versa)?

Stories for many, many years made frequent use of the damsel in distress trope, where female characters are depicted as needing men to save them in big, dramatic displays. People eventually realized ...
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150 views

Looking for a software that might not exist

This will probably be hard to explain so I'll list off what I'm looking for. Software that allows me to have more than one main protagonist. My story has five main characters and the POV switches ...
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1answer
103 views

How do you combine a thick but secondary plot with a light but primary plot?

The primary plot of a story is a rather light mystery involving two characters in pursuit of a lost treasure of sorts, forced to solve a legendary riddle, following archaeological clues and occasional ...
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509 views

Making conflicts based on misunderstanding

So, the problem is that I can't make conflicts based on a misunderstanding that wouldn't resolve in five paragraphs. My chars are too smart for that, I'm too smart for that (and also have all the time ...
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102 views

What are the possible driving factors of betrayal scenes?

I've been having a hard time thinking about a good way to create a betrayal scene without forcing it. Even if I somehow wrote the scene, I just can't feel the emotions behind the betrayal; the sadness,...
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141 views

How do you keep track of character timelines?

I would love to hear, in-depth, your system for keeping track of character arcs happening simultaneously in a novel. Particularly for characters' emotional highs and lows which don't sync up. I am ...
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Can you have several sequential plots inside a novel and how much is too much?

A plot is composed of the following: Exposition Inciting Incident Rising Action or Progressive Complications Dilemma Climax Denouement Can you have a novel where a plot ends with the heroes finishing ...
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Is it ok to hide main motive of the character throughout the book?

Is it ok to hide main motive of the character throughout the book? In my story, the main character never tells why he's doing what he's doing and the reader are fooled into believing he's doing it for ...
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How to stay motivated while writing a story, after the initial burst of enthusiasm?

TL;DR: How do you approach to writing? What part of the work do you enjoy the most? And how do you keep the motivation up? I often ask myself if I really like to write. I mean, I have a lot of ideas ...
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1answer
101 views

Is it possible to use an intentional plot hole as a literary device?

Is it possible to use an intentional plot hole as a literary device? If not as a literary device, can you use a plot hole intentionally for other reasons? I am wondering if there are authors who use ...
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293 views

Character growth when the entire story is actively working to prevent it?

My MC is a woman who is shy, introverted, has a strong sense of right and wrong but also a doormat personality - basically, even if she sees a wrong done she would rather stay unhappy than speak up ...
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130 views

How can I keep a spy character portrayed as competent and yet have interactions between protagonist and antagonist?

I have a character that is a spy, and part of their job is sneaking around and getting into places without being noticed. However, in order to have conflict in the plot, have characters interacting to ...
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2answers
412 views

Expanding ideas into novels

A lot of tiny ideas come to my mind but I don't know how to work on them and expand them into "valuable, satisfying, and worth of reading novels", and as a result, I lose motivation and give ...
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How do you continue developing characters in an urban fantasy/portal fantasy after the initial arc of adapting to the supernatural wears off?

This question is very similar to this one, but I felt it was distinct enough that it was worth asking as a separate question. In a lot of fantasy and science-fiction stories that are nominally set in ...
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Where can I find resources for bedtime story plots?

For past ten months, my wife and I have been telling bedtime stories of our own making to our older daughter (who recently turned 4). We do it on alternate evenings. The stories have a nearly-constant ...
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Deciding potential scenes and keeping the tension in my short story

To give some background, my short story is written from the perspective of person K. His school friend A (they are both in their mid-twenties now) invites him to stay in Vegas for a short time, and K ...
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2answers
118 views

How would authorities handle a disappearance caused by paranormal means?

A story of mine starts with a character disappearing in his radio studio while on air. Nobody else was in the building with him. A pair of sunglasses that he always kept in his shirt pocket was the ...
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1answer
54 views

This my approach to make a superhuman combat sport more fair? [closed]

This isn't really a world-building question. Since I im asking for y'all thoughts on my writing and writing a general. In the past, I said it would be hard to add an MMA/Boxing weight class type of ...
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Plotting Multiple Story Lines

Let's say you have multiple lines of events going on at once in a story. Call this a multithreaded plot. Is this common in stories? How would you represent this on paper before drafting?
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194 views

How to come up with scene ideas?

I'm currently outlining my novel, and I'm having trouble coming up with scenes/situations to put my characters in. I've tried scene prompts but they don't work for me. Sometimes I will think of a ...
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160 views

How should I input a "while something happened" text?

I am trying to create a children's story that explains how a dog is lost and can't find its way back home. After around 6 pages, the dog is found and rescued. I want to insert a "flashback" ...
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1answer
143 views

How do you avoid "rushing to the good stuff" with poor pacing as an inexperienced writer?

I was recently watching a writing review talking about the pacing in the recent Invincible adaptation. One thing that the author of this video pointed out is that when authors are very inexperienced ...
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163 views

What works fine in a movie but doesn't in a book?

As a writer I'm not only looking up to great books, but I take many inspirations from movies as well. I wonder though if there are any techniques that don't translate well between those mediums. Are ...
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Is it okay to write short adjacent story of a second lead in the main story?

I am writing a story of a slice of life of a teenager girl who seeks her forgotten past and run away from her forced marriage to follow her dreams. I want to add another story of her cousin and her ...
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127 views

Turning ideas into hero's journey story [closed]

I want some advice on how to come up with a good story idea I have to create a story that has the 12-stage hero's journey structure, with a Byronic hero. Right now I can't seem to think of any good ...
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1answer
46 views

What are some ways to do recurring dreams effectively/better?

I am using a series of recurring dreams to illustrate a character's mental state and to also throw in a change of pace in amongst the regular non-dream action. The dream format really allows me to do ...
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1answer
84 views

How can I compensate for lack of decision-making due to a non-sentient protagonist?

I intend to write an adventure novel where the protagonist is a (divine) plant. Though it cannot move or speak, it's necessary for the plant to be the main protagonist (there will not be any subplots)....
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138 views

Is there any "right way" to outline a novel?

I've never had a solid template for outlining my novels. I don't even know if I'm doing it right, if there's a right way to do it. For my characters, I have a list of questions that I fill out. For my ...
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3k views

Is my opening chapter too short?

I've just started writing my first proper novel, I've written short stories and started to write before, but never really had the motivation, but now I have a new, interesting storyline to write about,...
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134 views

How to add subtle hints for plot twist in your story?

In a murder mystery novel or stories alike, how do you give out hints and foreshadow key details without being obvious that those details are important yet if the readers read through it again after ...
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1answer
92 views

Is it possible to create a compelling and satisfying ending when the protagonist only has one main villain?

So the outline I have for my story is that the hero has amnesia due to the plot of the villain to kill him but he doesn't know that but eventually does since the villain figured out he was still alive ...

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