1. Guybrush Threepwood
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    Guybrush Threepwood Senior Member

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    Creating a plot

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Guybrush Threepwood, Jan 23, 2008.

    How would one go about doing this? Do you come up with an outline for the beginning, middle, and end or just come up with characters, a situation, and what not, then let it keep going, going back and making some changes a few times?
     
  2. lordofhats
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    lordofhats Contributing Member

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    I start with a beginning and an end. Create point A and Create Point B and its just a matter of getting the plot from A to B. Relatively easy for drafting and then you can add big details and a more complex plot and chracter developement later in other drafts.

    I've heard others say they start in the middle of the story and write to the end, then come back and write the beginning.

    Others have told me they write an ending and then go backwards from there.

    I think it depends on you.

    I would say that you should think of a concept in your head. What do you want to write about? Teenage romance, sci fi space battles, epic fantasy adventures, so on and so forth. Think of a scene and write it. Then based on that scene develope the world, characters and a plot. For plot ask yourself the following about the scene:

    1. How did this event come about?
    2. What Happens before this event?
    3. What Happens after this event?
    4. How does this event effect certain peoples or groups?
    etc
    etc
    etc

    That's how I do it. Its just one way though. I'd bet there is an infinit number of ways to develope a plot. You could just think of a character, put him in a simple normal life and write and see where it takes you. Think of a fantasy world and find an event to follow. its all up to you how you go about it. it may take awhile before you find something that works for you.
     
  3. Klee
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    Klee Contributing Member

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    I guess the way I do it is come up with a conflict and some characters to solve it (sometimes it comes the other way around) and just work it from there. *shrug* I'm not really sure, sometimes the conflict is hard to come by so I end up with a rather plot less story, lol.
     
  4. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Guybrush Threepwood,

    Part of it depends, I think, on the type of fiction you're writing. Short stories or novel length.

    With a novel, I believe it's important to know where to begin...at what point in the action/situation to bring the reader in. Then the minimum along the way is to have some highpoints or important events in the plot listed, in order and the consequences of those events. Also, having a strong idea where the story will end is a good idea.

    It's kind of like planning a cross country vacation. You map out the places you want to vist and the route you expect to take. But like any vacation, there are delays, unexpected sites to see, detours, etc. Some of the anticipated stops are a disappointment while some are more than what was expected. Maybe the ultimate destination will change.

    Back with the novel. And after you've written the first draft...you may decide that you started in the wrong place...had to start later in the action, and fill in the bit of backstory as needed. Maybe a few plot events can be eliminated as unnecessary and to keep the pacing right. Maybe a better ending or resolution of the main (or secondary) conflict(s) occurs. Maybe a character is eliminated or two are merged while accomplishing the same thing in propelling the story forward.

    Planning, having a road map, helps get from point A to B to C and all the way to the end. It sets a marker to write the story to...breaks it into managable chuncks. While the contents aren't writtin in stone, the contents keep a writer on target and from going off on tangents.

    There are some writers who suggest and prefer to write without any preparation or idea where the story will take them. Some would argue that it takes the mystery and excitement out of the actual writing of the story...and if it does that to the writer, it will to the reader. While I don't agree with that, they do.

    In the end, nobody is 100% right...if there were a special secret writing forumula that was perfect for every writer, it'd have gotten out by now and everybody would use it.

    Take whatever recommendations come your way via this string, reading elsewhere or through inspiration, and mold them into what works best for you and your writing. But, having a plan (whether on paper or even bouncing around in your head) I think saves a lot of time by streamlining rewrites/revision, and not ending up 1/4, 1/3 or half way through a project with a plot to nowhere--dead end.

    Terry
     
  5. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    every writer has his/her own way of doing that... and many of us will do it in more than one way, depending on what hits us first... sometimes we'll think of a neat character and the story comes later... and other times, an entire plot will pop out of our subconscious and the character just sort of 'people' it automatically... yet other times, it may be a setting that grabs us first...

    and the writing process differs just as much, or more!... so, it's best to just start with whatever idea you have and go about writing the story in whatever way works best for you, instead of trying to do what anyone else does...

    love and hugs, maia
     
  6. Randomthought31
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    Randomthought31 Member

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    Personally, the story idea which I'm working on right now came from a song. HIM's when love and death embrace. I didn't take the idea of the actual song, but merely the title. and my idea for a "killer" marriage just stuck in my head.
     
  7. Charisma
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    Charisma Transposon Contributor

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    I usually let the inspiration come to me or bounce out an idea by merging different events/people/items/etc. Then I work my way through the story, discovering it myself, and come back to see if there are any loopholes. Best wishes with your work!
     
  8. Guybrush Threepwood
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    Guybrush Threepwood Senior Member

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    Wow! I guess this is the right place to come to about writing.
    Thank you all for the helpful advice/suggestions/etc.
    Also, thank you for the hugs and loves, maia.
     
  9. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    any time, guy!... more hugs, m
     
  10. DavidGil
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    DavidGil Senior Member

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    It's probably not helpful and is a very unusual way of doing things, but I just start with a scene or an idea. No planning involved.

    So normally, when I get an idea, I'd write a paragraph or one-two sentences which serve as a gateway into the story in case I leave it for a while and forget what the idea was. It is rare I forget though. So in other words, the first paragraph would sum up the entire scene at the very least, if not the story. (if it's a short especially.)

    Then, I build it from there. Of course, it helps if the scene is interesting or at least, the characters you envisioned are.
     
  11. Randomthought31
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    Randomthought31 Member

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    I do that a lot too, except I never write it down. I just shuffle through any ideas that pop in my head and ask myself if I like that idea or not right then and there. If I like it, I keep it and try to play with it in my mind to build it up before I actually start writing. On the other hand, if I don't like it, I alter it a bit to see if I can learn to like it, if I still can't, I trash it and move on.
     

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