1. AHewlett
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    AHewlett Member

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    Can't get this plot to go forward

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by AHewlett, Sep 24, 2012.

    Hey everyone,

    I want to write a short story about an Actress and her boyfriend, it's an idea I've had for some time but never got round to plotting it out.

    I've managed to get a prologue planned (or first chapter, whichever it ends up being) but chapter two is being a bit of a pain in the backside. The prologue starts out as a dream, the actress is remembering when she first met her boyfriend (which is in high school) and then she wakes up which starts chapter 1 (or 2) off. In this chapter, she arrives at home which she bought with her boyfriend and he greets her....now I've become stuck. I would assume that couple who haven't seen each other in a couple of months would either head straight to the bedroom or go out for a celebratory dinner...but I've just hit a blank which is darn annoying.

    I suppose in this story I wanted to show a young couple in love, trying to deal with the pressure of the press and her fame which to me would give some conflict but this plot..darn annoying.

    Any hints or tips would be great as I'm writing the prologue today!

    Thanks!
    Anne-Marie
     
  2. Steph4136
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    Steph4136 Senior Member

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    What I would do is just sit down and brainstorm. Any idea that pops into your head that has to do with the story and existing characters, jot it down. Even something that seems silly at first could turn into a part of your story. Think about others in their lives and how they affect your MCs. What are their plans for the future? Are they completely smitten in love still? Or is he starting to feel overshadowed by her fame? Is there an actor she met on set trying to turn her away from her boyfriend? Someone trying to turn him away? Did they move from small town nowhere to LA and she loves it and he hates it? Vice versa?

    Just ask yourself some questions about them and see what you can come up with.
     
  3. Jamie Regent-Villiers
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    Jamie Regent-Villiers Member

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    Hi Anne-Marie: When you say you want to write a "short story" about an actress & her boyfriend, do you mean a short story which is like between 2,000 and 7,500 words, or a short story as in a novella of 17,500 to 40,000 words?

    I ask because in a short story there won't be space for a prologue & you should dive right in with the action.

    Also a short story doesn't have chapters as such as by its definition it should be recounted in one continuous narrative. A short story's paragraphs are its "chapters", providing enough information to tell the story.

    In any event, personally I would go for the "head straight for the bedroom" scenario. Nothing like a good sex scene to catch the reader's attention!
     
  4. AHewlett
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    AHewlett Member

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    Oooh, couple of good ideas there! I think it's going to be a novella to be honest. I was trying to aim for a short story but it might turn into a novella. I suppose I'll have to see how far I go and whether it's going to be a novella or an actual novel.

    I was a bit unsure about going straight to the bedroom but as you pointed out, a good sex scene will catch the reader's attention!

    I'm going to do a bit of brainstorming before I head off a meeting, you never know, the meeting might actually help!
     
  5. TheStarChild
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    TheStarChild Member

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    Nix the prologue. I'm always weary when I hear someone mention a prologue. Just start where the first thing happens.

    Next, you need to think of the conflict. There's an actress and her boyfriend. So what? What happens? What drives the plot? That's conflict and, as others have mentioned, you need to choose something that happens to move things along.

    Is the couple becoming distant? How are they dealing with her fame? Is another man in the picture? Etc. You'll probably want to think of an antagonist as well, although I guess something could play the role of an antagonist that isn't necessarily human, e.g. her fame.
     
  6. AHewlett
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    AHewlett Member

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    It's a pity that there has to be conflict in a story but I suppose, it would be the fame getting to them...especially the boyfriend. Not having her home for months on end, wondering what she's up to though she remains in contact with him, reads false rumours in the press and things like that. It is bound to shake up a relationship and it just needs that push...such as false pregnancy rumours.
     
  7. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    Work on developing a story arc for them, and the plot will come right on along. You have an interesting premise to the characters, which is a good start. Where do you want them to be in the end? Where will they hit a point that makes them have to make a decision to need to change. From there it's just an internal or external, or both, struggle to reach their goal.

    Hope this helps :)
     
  8. AHewlett
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    AHewlett Member

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    I guess I want them to have a happy ending, but I've just suddenly thought of one idea for conflict which I'll run by everyone. Maybe her boyfriend is getting a bit fed up with her being away, having to read about her in the papers, etc. and what it comes down to "it's either me or the job"...instead of a dog this time.
     
  9. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Short stories have neither chapters nor prologues.

    Other than that, it's your story. Decide where it's going before you start. You might jump in your car and start driving before you decide on a destination, but as entertaining it may be to pass the time on a bright Sunday afternoon, you won't get as far as you will with a destination in mind.

    As it is your story. the responsibility is yours, and only yours, to select the destination.
     
  10. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    How about actress wants to show her boyfriend her latest clip or shot or audition video or something? At some point boyfriend sees the actress kiss another actor on stage (pure acting for a film, not cheating) but he feels uncomfortable with it. He obsesses over it, starts reading into everything she does. Why does she always have to have drinks with the other actors and directors etc? Why does she keep going for these sexy roles? Why doesn't she ask for a butt double instead, and prefers to show her own bum on screen? Has she no modesty? Look at the way she's kissing that guy - crap he's ripping her clothes off - surely she must find him attractive at least?

    And on and on - jealousy. Play with it.
     
  11. DefinitelyMaybe
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    DefinitelyMaybe Contributing Member Contributor

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    There's a video somewhere with John Barrowman kissing women, I think in an acting class for the TV program "How do you solve a problem like Maria". Even with JB being gay, if you see the look on the faces of the women he kissed, then I could imagine their partners feeling just a bit jealous.

    I don't think this is totally irrelevant to the thread. I think seeing their faces shows that acting or not, those kisses had impact, which could contribute to the plot in a Mckk-post-ish direction.
     
  12. prettyprettyprettygood
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    prettyprettyprettygood Active Member

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    In addition to his jealousy perhaps she's upset with him for not fitting into her world, maybe he teases her about the shallowness of her friends, makes excuses not to go to fancy parties, doesn't like her films (if you don't already have a career for him he could even be a scathing film critic). A happy ending could then be one of compromise; he wears a posh suit to her premiere, she uses a bum double, they agree to give their future kids normal first names and weird celebrity middle names, or whatever :)
     
  13. AHewlett
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    AHewlett Member

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    Hmm, I like those ideas! It's just trying to get past this one chapter so I'm going to start writing and just get it out, see where my brain and fingers take me then do some editing/reading over later and see what I've come up with. If it's good enough, then I start incorporating other ideas....hopefully!
     
  14. SuperVenom
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    SuperVenom Contributing Member

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    Cool, im only starting myself so what I say might not have much merit, but i like to try and help in the hope that when the dreaded writers block hits me I will be able to ask for help to :)
    I think the reunion would be bitter sweet, a huge rush of emotions etc. All hugs and tears at first until she feels his arms slip from around her. You get the sense he wants it all to be the same but something in the back of his head tells him and her the closeness isnt quite there. She should ask and he answer nothing is wrong, until later after a meal and some distance she again asks whats wrong, again answering nothing as he leaves to get desert, she look around the room and finds in his bin a news paper with a pic of her movies kissing scene and the paper headline, "possible budding romance on set' with the lead mans head scribbled over. Or is it her who had the indiscretion in the first place, leaving a man alone for 3months isn't always the best idea lol. Not until you break em in anyway lol (not speaking for experience although married lol) excuse the spelling mistakes, trying to write and be dyslexic isn't a good combination, but i have checked best i can :)
     

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