1. GirlMeetsPen
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    GirlMeetsPen New Member

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    I Fail At Connecting Plots and Endings

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by GirlMeetsPen, Mar 4, 2015.

    I have crazy, vivid dreams at times that come out of nowhere (as in, I didn't watch a movie/show or read a book or news story that was related in some way) and sometimes I think they would make good stories or scripts.

    The latest was horrifying and I honestly was disgusted when I woke up, but I have read the likes of Dean Koontz and Stephen King, and watch American Horror Story, so I know I'm not the only one that has a mind like this.

    So the story line stemming from this dream is:

    A woman (MC) is having marital problems and is looking for a way to forget about it. She goes on vacation with her friends, and they end up meeting a couple of strange guys (uh oh, cliche). They end up partying with the guys, MC being the responsible one and not doing anything reckless (boring, right?). She and friends have a great time, but before returning home, they learn that one of the women that had been at the club with them has disappeared. MC is a bit disturbed, since the missing woman seemed to have been close to the men they were hanging out with.

    Once home, MC keeps in contact with the guy she "hit it off" with and develops a bit of a thing for him. They remain friendly. Shit keeps hitting the fan at home with her husband and MC is stressed out, but she is trying to make it work. It's discovered that the missing woman was found dead in the same hotel MC and her friends had stayed in. It is considered homicide.

    She finds out that one of her friends is going back to visit one of the guys, and this instigates contact between her and her crush. He suggests he's disappointed that she isn't visiting as well, but she has to work. He surprises her by showing up at her work,and she ends up spending the day with him and he drives back home the same day.

    Her friend ends up not returning from her trip. MC and third friend worry together, and she is reported as missing. The three guys are rounded up for questioning, but are let go since there is no evidence. Friend does not turn up. MC's crush swears he knows nothing, he saw her for all of a few minutes the night she arrived, but then drove to see MC the next day, so he was gone the whole time.

    MC starts snooping, and becomes suspicious of her crush. She does some research and finds out that several other women have disappeared from the area he lives in, all of them being connected to his friends, and mainly him, somehow. He owns several night clubs, and even a strip joint, and it turns her off from talking to him. She is certain that he knows something about her friend but there is nothing for the police to go off of.

    She ends up (and I haven't really developed how it happens) being kidnapped, and is driven to an unknown place and locked inside a room- where her friend is also being held and tortured. There are signs that there have been many victims in this room and that their captor is masochistic (this part was the most vivid part of my dream- so it's probably going to be gruesome).

    First off- is it overdone? Will someone read this? While I plan to put more into the "thriller" part, is someone going to find this interesting?

    Second- I'm struggling with where I want the ending to go. I already started writing bits and pieces (I'm a jumper, I write scenes when they come to me) and I've developed pretty "emotional" bonds between both the MC and her husband, and MC and her crush. On one hand, I would like to make MC's crush the culprit and have MC go back to her husband and work shit out. On the other, perhaps MC's crush is the one to discover what his business associates have done and rescue her- and therefore leading her to leave her husband because of how unhappy she is. I'm a bit of a romantic at heart and have a thing for the underdog/outsider.

    Thoughts? Rip me apart, if need be.
     
  2. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    Hi, welcome to the forum.
    To this point you have a nice thriller mystery going. Of course it's all in how you write it that makes a good or a bad book.

    I don't enjoy this kind of story personally so my comments won't be relevant. But this is a very popular storyline in novels and movies. I'll leave it to others to comment.

    You need to write it. It's not the plot that matters the most, it's how it's written.

    I didn't write my novel in order, I wrote the chapters that worked and passed a section if I couldn't write that part yet, then went back. So that's fine.

    As for the ending, some people insist on a complete outline before starting, others write and let the story evolve.

    Bottom line, you have to write it to know if it's good and in this case, perhaps where you want it to go. A good story idea is like a match, it can trigger the story. But it's the writing that determines if the fire will catch and how well it will burn.
     
  3. Bryan Romer
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    Bryan Romer Contributing Member Contributor

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    Do you mean the captor is sadistic or does the captor really enjoy his/her own pain?
     
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  4. GirlMeetsPen
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    GirlMeetsPen New Member

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    Sadomasochistic is what I mean.
     
  5. GirlMeetsPen
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    GirlMeetsPen New Member

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    You are, of course, right. I know that the writing is what matters. I've said it a million times myself: this or that movie/book had a great storyline but the delivery ruined it.

    I will have to further investigate my own mind to see what happens. Thank you, for your input.
     
  6. Boger
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    Boger Contributing Member

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    I doubt he's "50 shades" kind of SM.

    Add a plot twist where it turns out she's the bad guy; but she's so psychotic she doesn't realize she tortures people on a regular basis. Sort of a werewolf, per se.
     
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  7. Nicoel
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    Nicoel Contributing Member

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    I guessed the ending by the time you established that women were going missing and she had a crush on a guy in the group of people... I have a reputation for guessing endings of books and skipping to the last 20 pages haha. My main suggestion is mix it up a little bit. Change the genders. Make it a group of women kidnapping men and torturing them for their own pleasure or a group of women kidnapping other women. Add plot twists. Make the reader think, "Who the hell do I trust?!" and make them need to keep reading to find out!

    But even if you do go with the cliche parts, it's really how you write it that will determine if it works or not. :)
     
  8. Bryan Romer
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    The plot sounds a bit like film Hostel and its sequel. That's not necessarily bad, but you have to choose which audience you are going to aim for, the torture porn fans or a more thriller based theme.
     
  9. idle
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    idle Active Member

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    The version of MC's crush being the culprit is too obvious from the start, you keep pointing at him; unless you make it a bit more complicated, it wouldn't be a good mystery or thriller (it could probably work it the main focus was the torture and things). On the other hand, his innocence is an "obvious" option too, but it gives you more room to manoeuvre, I think. For instance, he could be guilty of something, but not the killings.
     
  10. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    Okay, I think you need to decide pretty soon on several different aspects of this story.

    First off, is this some sort of mystery? Is the fact that nobody knows who is perpetrating these crimes the main thrust of your story? And are the 'relationships' inside the story, the MC, husband, crush triangle merely the subplots? Ditto her relationship with the other women. Are these women she just hangs out with, or are they near and dear friends?

    Or ...is this a darker story, about human motivation and what might hide behind the faces people put out to the world?

    If this is just a thriller/mystery, then you should simply concentrate on what would make the most unexpected, yet ultimately satisfying ending. That's actually relatively simple, and gets down to plotting. Then you shape your story around your plot. If you need the MC's crush to be somebody who appears to be hiding secrets, or her husband is vengeful, or one of the women has a motive for framing one of the guys ...etc.

    However, if it's a darker story, that's where you can start having more fun (in my opinion.) That's where the character development becomes crucial.

    If that is the way you want to work this story, then you need to dig VERY DEEPLY into the characters you've created. What really makes them tick. Does the MC know everything there is to know about her husband? And what about the crush? Is she able or willing to look into his past history? And if so, what does she find? Does she need to do this behind his back, or can she be upfront about it? What is his reaction if he discovers her investigation? Does he invite her to meet his parents? Does he show her his old high school yearbook and pay slips from all the years after that? Is he mad at her for not trusting him? Does he understand why she doesn't trust him, and helps her learn more about his past?

    What kind of a guy is he, really? You need to figure this out for yourself. This doesn't mean you have to tell the reader all this, but you need to know. It sounds to me as if you haven't worked this out yet, and it's crucial to the story.

    Nobody else can do this for you. It's something you need to figure out for yourself.

    You said something about dreams. Is this a story that came to you in a dream? If so, think HARD about the dream itself. What were your feelings during the dream? I am a firm believer in dreams that reflect the truth. Dreams don't lie. If you're not sure about somebody in your life, dreams often lead you to the truth about them. Dreams are mostly about instinct, and I think you need to trust them.

    Anyway, you need to work out what the ending will be and where this is all heading. Then the way you tell your story will become much clearer. And good luck. Yes, these kinds of plots can be cliche these days, and often arise in TV shows and movies. But you don't have to follow these cliches. I think lots of people experience trust issues when they are developing relationships. Maybe that's what you should look at more closely than just creating a crime story.
     
  11. GirlMeetsPen
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    GirlMeetsPen New Member

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    The way that this whole story is developing is making it unclear who is actually kidnapping/killing these women. I'm almost tempted to turn it around and make her husband into the psycho that kidnaps her friend and eventually her.

    Because I'm still very early in the story writing process, I can twist is however I want. I added a scene where MC waits up for her husband all night, and he doesn't return until early morning. It causes a fight, and she ends up meeting the other guy later in the day.

    Now, I should mention her husband is a lawyer who is in criminal law. So after pondering this for a bit, I could actually make him an accomplice to the crush and that would make for a nice twist.

    I'm going to sit down and write some to see what comes out.
     
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  12. GirlMeetsPen
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    GirlMeetsPen New Member

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    I would really like it to end up being darker. While I do not do well in describing the projects I am working on, I am working on MC, crush, and husband so they have darker sides.

    The dream led to the crush being a sadomasochistic murderer. It's so obvious, though, I'm only using the "scene" in my work. As I said, I'm still not positive I want him to be involved- the more I work on it- piece by piece- it seems to me that it isn't just him committing the crimes. So, we shall see.

    Thank you for your input. I really appreciate it. I hate being cliche but sometimes they are needed for a reason. There's no reason I can't twist them a bit though.
     
  13. GirlMeetsPen
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    GirlMeetsPen New Member

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    This is what I feared. I haven't seen those movies but I knew that the idea wouldn't be completely original. There are rarely original ideas these days. I'm attempting to twist it away from the norm, though.
     

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