1. Jack
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    Jack Contributing Member

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    3 Tips on How to Contruct a Successful Plot.

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Jack, Dec 21, 2008.

    Are you having some trouble with plots? Then hopefully by reading my simple guide, it will help you accomplish the unachievable

    First of all, I would like to define plot:

    Source: Wikipedia



    Tip # 1: Figure out your 5 W's (Who, what, where, when, why, and how) If you've managed to successfully completed the 5 W's then you are well on your way to create your novel, story, etc.

    Tip # 2: Once you've figured out your setting and characters (5 W's) then its time to organize your story! Use the correct plot structure, begin with the Exposition - the introduction of the main characters and setting. Once you've fully established and mentioned all of your characters and setting. The next section would be the Rising Action - one (or more) characters in crisis. Introduce your conflicts or difficulties throughout your novel. Depending on your story, your conflict(s) will be resolved and this is known as the Climax - point of highest emotion; turning point. Ater the climax, Falling Action - resolution of character’s crisis. Your conflicts in your story are resolved and will be returning back to its normal state. Denouement is the outcome or resolution of a doubtful series of occurrences. When everything returns to normal and your conflicts will be fully diminished. However, you may decide upon the type of novel. (You may have a never ending conflict. The decisions are entirely up to you).

    Tip # 3: If you get stuck on some situations, or you just have a different idea and wish to do something completely different then its ok. People tend to make up there minds a lot, (like me) when writing a novel for their first time. Just remember that your plot must flow and have proper procedures/structures (steps) in order to successfully solve your conflicts. (Or your conflict may never end)
     
  2. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    Good tips, but not all stories end with a falling action...mine will resolve the big question of what was being done with the biological weaponry that my MC finds..but everything else is a cliff-hanger.

    A lot of times it depends on the writer and what he/she wants to accomplish.
     
  3. othman
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    othman Member

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    It's quite a good guide if you have almost no idea but you have to realise that every idea is different and the variety is so great that you can't really give a guide.
     
  4. Daedalus
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    Daedalus Active Member

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    Sorry, but novels don't have to start with exposition, nor do they have to end with denouement. I've read novels that don't introduce the MC until three or four chapters in. Others I've read that don't end with everything being resolved, in order to leave the door open for a sequel. It ultimately depends on how the author wants to write it.

    That's not to say this isn't a good guide for those who may not know what way to write the plot, but you don't have to follow it to a tee. We're allowed to make our own decisions and structure our own novels.
     
  5. Jack
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    Jack Contributing Member

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    Very true Sam Winchester,

    I was just explaining the basics... you do not have to follow this. Its for the people who do not understand the fundamentals. You can modify, change things around and perhaps add in two or more plots which might occur simultaneously (Which would be quite interesting, some novels that I read, have two or more plots). Be Creative ;)!!!
     
  6. othman
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    othman Member

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    By the way, I don't mean to be rude but seeing as this is like a beginner's guide (or at least it looks like it IMO), why post it on some forums called 'writing forums'?
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    othman... do you really think there are no beginners here?

    as for the 'guide' i have to strongly disagree with telling beginners to open a novel with 'exposition' which is considered a major no-no by most seasoned writers and teachers of fiction writing...

    and where has the 'appropriated plot' been appropriated from?... and why? ;-)

    that, and other goofs like 'manged' and 'there' tell me the presenter of this lesson may himself be a beginner and thus probably shouldn't be trying to teach others till he gets his own act together...

    no offense intended... just pointing out that one should be very careful about one's own writing when trying to establish oneself as a writing expert/guru...
     
  8. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    Well... Jack does at least give us one of his sources (Wikipedia). I think maybe these tips worked for him and he wanted to pass them on--perhaps he could have mentioned this?
    I have been warned about too much 'exposition', but I was advised by an agent to make my character's goal very clear early on, which I found worked better for me. (Not all agents are harpies, this one was very objective and helpful when she explained why she had to reject the manuscript).
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    This time, Maia got here before I did.

    I wholeheartedly agree that exposition is not a good starting point for a novel, or even a short story. Exposition should be sprinkled throughout the story, rather than presented on an oaken serving board at the outset.

    Also, a novel will have a central plot, constructed around the pivotal conflict, but it will have as many contributory subplots as there are other conflicts. The stages of rising action through denouement will appear in that order, IF they appear at all, for each plot in the story. How much of each is shown to the reader is the author's choice.

    The sequence of events that comprise the novel or short story is the storyline, not the plot. The storyline reveals WHAT happens, but the plot reveals the HOW and WHY.
     
  10. Daedalus
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    Daedalus Active Member

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    Not to mention that Wikipedia is not a reputable source. Wikipedia articles are written by anyone and everyone. When I was in college, I used Wikipedia for a certain quotation, and my college professor ripped me a new one. Don't use Wikipedia for anything. While most of what is written on it may be true, there is always the possibility that what you are reading is erroneous.
     
  11. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    I couldn't have said it better myself, mom! Especially when a certain writer you knew personally, that I'm a big fan of, didn't start his novels like that...most of them started with a BANG and ran from there...
     

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