1. Cerrus
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    Cerrus Senior Member

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    A Trilogy With One Goal?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Cerrus, Aug 8, 2011.

    Hello again everyone. I was wondering about something that has to do with the plot in my story. Is it possible to have one goal to be accomplished during a whole trilogy and the story not to die out? Thinking about it, the Lord of the Rings Trilogy had one goal to destroy the ring. Do you guys think this is ok to do?
     
  2. Mr Mr
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    Mr Mr Active Member

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    Lots of series have one goal, like lord of the rings as you mentioned. The thing that stops the reader losing interest or the story dieing out are the sub-plots. Lord of the rings had the battles to fill each book.

    If your trilogy was going to have one main goal you would need smaller stories to fill each book.
     
  3. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Lord of the Rings wasn't written as a trilogy, as I understand it. That was a decision of the publisher afterward. If you're going to write a series, whether a trilogy or longer work, each separate book should, in my view, serve as much as a complete story in and of itself as possible. There should be some sort of resolution at the end that makes that work, by itself, satisfying to the reader.
     
  4. WriterDude
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    WriterDude Contributing Member Contributor

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    Personally, I think it's pointless to make a trilogy instead of two sequels if they don't have a common goal. Lord of the Rings was all about destroying the ring, but each book had a lot of sub-plots. Harry Potter on the other hand was about defeating Voldemort, but each book had a start and end. It didn't have to be seven books in total. If they had ended after the first, it would still be a satisfying ending.
     
  5. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    I agree that there should be a common goal that spans the entire trilogy, but there should be some resolution (e.g. subplots and the like) in each individual volume.
     
  6. daven85
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    daven85 Member

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    You need something in each book that makes the reader want to read on. If it was just the one overlying story where your three books were actually just your beginning middle and end.

    Think of your overall plot.

    Then back it down in three main sub sections. For example you may need to get something before they can move on, and from that they need to get something else before they can move onto the last section.
     
  7. AveryWhite
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    AveryWhite Senior Member

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    good points i hadnt really thought about it much but i definatly agree :)
     
  8. Fullmetal Xeno
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    Fullmetal Xeno Protector of Literature Contributor

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    To be honest, Lord of the Rings was supposed to be one book like in the earlier posts. Just on how like the movie were supposed to be One whole 12 hour movie. But there was plenty of subplots to move the story along, and stop them from doing it so easily. But the whole thing was planned, so it had plenty of story-lines to continue the story without dragging.
     
  9. Reggie
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    Reggie I Like 'Em hot "N Spicy Contributor

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    If you ever heard of the movie, Wizard of Oz, you may notice that the main character had one major goal. That one major goal is to return to Kansas when a cyclone strands her in a magical land and is stuck there. She had many sub-goals, which surrounds the major goal --return to Kansas. Some of her sub-goals were to protect the slippers, retrieve the broomstick, and find wizard, the wizard who has the ability to send her home.

    See, you don't need to have more than one major goal to write a trilogy (though Wizard of Oz only has one movie). You may have to create more obstacles for the character to reach the main goal. Otherwise, you'll be allowing the main character to reach the main goal easily, and it would serve no purpose to write a sequel to the book. Some stories require that the main character to overcome obstacles, which are the sub-goals, in order to reach the major goal. If the main character never returned to Kansas, the author may have a second movie, and then a trilogy, and so on, especially if the magical land is pretty huge.
     
  10. Mikeyface
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    Mikeyface Member

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    I think it comes down to the scale of the story idea, and how good you write the first novel. If the scale is befitting to a series of books, then that is a massive gamble you would be taking on.

    It all comes down to scale.
     
  11. Cerrus
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    Cerrus Senior Member

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    Thank you for all your opinions, and suggestions guys.

    But now that I've thought about it, this is my first novel that I'm going to try and get published with. I've heard a lot of people say that you want to start with a ONE stand alone novel, rather than come to the publisher saying you have a whole series lined up. What are your guys thoughts on that? I'm thinking that I should plan out my story, which I am going to do, and then see if I can divide it up into three novels with endings that don't leave the reader hanging. I'm gonna see if I can think of some obstacles or sub-plots for the story.
     
  12. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    There is a whole thread on this here:

    http://www.writingforums.org/showthread.php?t=44713
     

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