1. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    How to ensure my plot does not drag out and become boring

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by callumt2904, Jun 26, 2016.

    Hi all,

    I am not much of a writer but I want to develop my literary knowledge. I am 17 and stopped reading books when I was around 10 and only picked it up again around 1 year ago, therefore I haven't really read many books in the past few years.

    My initial idea came from a kind of faction v's faction book but that just seems like a copy of Game Of Thrones. I then moved my idea towards how these factions came about and how they developed. I decided on the path of a slave revolt. I haven't really decided on what time in history although I do want fights based using swords such rather than guns.

    With this idea the story would be extremely slow starting off which is something I would like to avoid so I guess I am asking for some inspiration for ideas that I could add for twists. I like the idea of different points of views like in Game Of Thrones where there are many stories happening at the same time. However for me the other story lines would have to come in time since the slaves need to revolt before anything can happen.

    Should I start in the past and show how the revolt happened and then maybe it turns out that the present character is reading a story of their families past? Then every time the story develops it shows a bit more of their past until it reaches the present time? Should I leave it as a single story line until another main character comes in and then the story line can be split?

    Sorry for the long post and sorry if I have posted this in the wrong section. Any help what so ever will help me so Thank you in advance.
     
  2. ashurbanipal
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    ashurbanipal Member

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    While the historical and political setting is important, remember that you aren't writing a history book but rather events from the point of view of one or more characters. What made Game of Thrones so popular is arguably the cast of memorable characters and how their decisions drive the plot. Focus on their motivations and what story they are telling, use the setting as a backdrop.

    If the character is reading family journals, that could possibly work if they are exciting enough and if you don't get the reader lost between too many characters. But there's also a potential disappointment when the reader finds out these characters are 'history'.
     
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  3. sahlmi
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    sahlmi Active Member

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    "How to ensure my plot does not drag out and become boring?"

    One word: conflict.
     
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  4. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    Short and to the point. You are 100% correct I'm just trying to find exciting ways of doing this rather than just having two factions fight.
     
  5. izzybot
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    izzybot Human Disaster Contributor

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    These are really questions only you can answer, because it's a matter of what you want to write. Since you're a fledgling writer, I'd really just advise you to pick whatever seems coolest or most interesting to you and jump into it to see if you like it or have any particular talent for it. Maybe it'll flop, maybe it'll turn out to be boring or convoluted - then you try something else. Write the way you're interested in writing.
     
  6. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    Thank you.

    I agree it would be a bit of a disappointment for them to find out it was a book. Kind of like something happening and then a person wakes up and it was all a dream. I think while it could be a disappointment, maybe I can reference the history in some other way that I will think about and develop when I get the stories plot underway.
     
  7. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    Yes I guess I am just overthinking it. Im going to do some research into conflict in history and see if anything interests me enough to add it to the plot. Like you said maybe it will turn out good maybe it won't since I am not much of a writer I just need to find out whats best for me and keep reading books for inspiration.
     
  8. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    Do you haven an inciting event in your story yet, to kick things off, so the starting is not slow or requires a lot of set up, before it were to happen?
     
  9. doggiedude
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    doggiedude Contributing Member

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    Conflict conflict conflict.
    The main plot can be a slave revolt but think about all the characters involved and what they want out of it.
    Paul's been a slave all his life. He hates it but at least his master isn't that cruel Sidney who likes to rape his slaves. Paul wouldn't mind being freed but he has no clue where he would even go afterward.
    Mary's in love with one of her father's slaves. Will he return his love if he's freed? Or has he only been acting that he likes her in order to get better treatment?
     
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  10. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    I was thinking the start could be the rebellion and the through out the next "stages" of the book it goes into the past and tells you about the plan of how they would overthrow the slave holders. In notes it sounds good for me its hard to put into text. I will try writing it in the next week or two.
     
  11. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    Very true the "main" characters need to have some kind of motive other than just not being a slave other wise its a bit of a pointless story. Their reason for revolting and losing their life must be out weighed by something they want. Like you have hinted, it could be love, it could be something he/she has always wanted.
     
  12. Ryan Elder
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    Ryan Elder Contributing Member

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    What if you did an opening prologue that was just a couple of paragraphs, like the opening of Star Wars, describing the backstory, and then jump right into the inciting event/rebellion afterwards?
     
  13. FireWater
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    FireWater Active Member

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    Novels are generally 80,000-100,000 words, or roughly 300 pages (as an average ballpark), so it's really crucial that you're writing something that you WANT to write about. Something that you'll be passionate about and look forward to working on, instead of seeing it like a school assignment that you've got to discipline yourself to do.

    With that said, if you don't care about the human aspect, it's going to get boring fast. The concept/idea is really just the backdrop for the character-based side of the story, no matter what type of genre you're working on.

    What types of interactions are you interested in writing about, on a human-conflict level? What types of human issues are you passionate about? Then, create characters with these conflicts and issues, and set it in the setting that you've come up with. Start with the character stuff, then figure out how it relates to the big picture plot.

    But if you're just writing about the plot/concept/idea, but don't have a character's personal side to help drive it along, it's going to be boring. Imagine reading a sci-fi where they only described gadgets for the entire novel, or a historical story where they just went on textbook-like diatribes about how things were back then. It would be boring, right? There needs to be solid interest that the readers can relate to.

    Note that when I say "personal" I don't even mean like just romance. It could be issues with oppression, parent/child dynamics, friendship issues, or anything else that humans everywhere can understand, and that you care about enough to write 300 pages of it.

    Like someone else said, in Game of Thrones, the character's personal issues is what makes the larger plot so interesting. The White Walkers, magic tree system, etc are cool, but the character issues are what make them important, by having things at stake that the readers/audience actually care about.
     
  14. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    Thank you for the reply. I haven't came up with any "cool" ideas yet although I can't say I have tried yet. When I come to planning characters I have some mild ideas which I will develop but I am looking for inspiration on some "magic tree system" type of things.
     
  15. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    I just want to know someone else's opinion on this idea.

    There are 3 plots, I have not yet had the ideas for two of them. The first plot starts at the midpoint of this slave revolt where they have not yet attacked but they have maybe started to plan it. For the another plots maybe one of them despises slaves which causes that conflict between them and I am not sure about the third. Its not too much to go off but I've only had the idea of this for about one week and I haven't written anything serious In years.
     
  16. BC Barry
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    BC Barry Member

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    Could your main character possibly have found a secret stash of history documents that were outlawed forever ago? Maybe they show the true history and not the history forced down society's throat. And he thinks the answer to today's major trauma could be found in those documents, yet they're just too many to take with him or it's too dangerous or whatever. So he has to sneak to the stash and small battles, conflicts, or espionage could occur during those outings? Especially if he has to hide bodies or disguise himself to avoid arousing suspicion.

    Just a thought.
     
  17. callumt2904
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    callumt2904 Member

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    In all the messages being sent I didn't see your message. That is actually a pretty good idea. I will take note and work with this it would definitely make the other all story a lot easier to tell for a beginner like me.
     

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