1. starz07
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    starz07 New Member

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    Stuck on ideas - Plot development based on Stimulus

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by starz07, Feb 17, 2014.

    [​IMG]

    The image above is my stimulus, which is based around the plot of my story as follow-

    -Time period/historical background: European colonization of the Americas in 1492
    -Tragic love story: the Native American guy falls in love with the blonde french woman, which the tribe disapproves of, ends with tribe plans to shoot the french women but shot the guy instead

    Any suggestions on how I could expand my story? It is quite vague currently. If you have any ideas, opinions or improvements please comment below.:):rolleyes:
     
  2. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    What do they do when the tribe show their disapproval? I think you can start from there. Do they decide to fight for their love? To run away together? Appear to be accepting their faith but seeing each other secretly? Plan to kill whoever stands in their way? This is the middle part of your story. The road from A to B.
     
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  3. JayG
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    JayG Banned Contributor

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    Forgive me, but it doesn't seem like much of a story: Boy meets girl...family disapproves...things end badly. Adding things in the middle wouldn't really change a lot, and in any case Shakespeare already did tha, and set the bar pretty high.

    That aside, you need an inciting incident, which would probably be them deciding to marry and then discovering that, like the fish that falls in love with a bird they have nowhere to live. The story would be the struggle to find a way to resolve the problem.

    But complicating that is that a solution is easy. All they would need do is head off into the woods, build a shelter, and set up housekeeping. Lots of real estate available at that time, so you would have to have a compelling reason why the story isn't over as soon as it becomes clear that no one wants them as a couple.

    Are you up to speed on the structure of fiction, what scenes are for, etc. Having a good grasp of that might make your job easier. But in the end, this is the key:

    “They can’t yank a novelist the way they can a pitcher. A novelist has to go the full nine, even if it kills him.” ~ Ernest Hemingway

    No one else can either write or plan your story.
     
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  4. starz07
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    starz07 New Member

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    Ah! Great idea, now I have a 'bridge' to link the introduction to conclusion! :)
     
  5. starz07
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    starz07 New Member

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    Thanks for your criticism! I do feel that the plot is very typical and lack originality, though as this is a GCSE creative writing task, I do only have 2 hours to write it (with a 1000 word limit).
    But I certainly would take your idea to add some sort of background reason and add some originality! :)
     
  6. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think that is a good place to start. You will need more, as JayG pointed out. But it seems like the logical next step in the thinking process. :) Good luck!
     
  7. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    It isn't a story, Jay. It's a story idea. She can flesh it out any way she wants, either before she begins writing it, or as she writes it.

    What you say here is true, she needs forces to move the story from point A to point B. An inciting incident is one way of looking at the motivation of the central plot.

    Starz, this may help: What is Plot Creation and Development?
     
  8. David K. Thomasson
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    David K. Thomasson Contributing Member

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    Yeah. Remember how that Romeo and Juliet thing flopped.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2014
  9. David K. Thomasson
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    David K. Thomasson Contributing Member

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    Vague, yes, but far from hopeless. Back to basics. Try the mnemonic D-O-A. It represents the skeleton of story, any story:

    D = desire. Somebody wants something.
    O = obstacle. Something gets in the way.
    A = action. The conflict of desire with obstacle stimulates action to get past the obstacle. This action will be the chief of your story.

    D - The native American guy and the French woman fall in love an want to be married.

    O - The native American guy's tribe disapproves.

    A - How do they, the couple, react to the disapproval? What do they do?

    Lots of details to fill in.

    D. How do they first meet and fall in love? This needs to be fleshed out so the reader experiences their desire, their falling in love and wanting to marry. You have to figure this out, make up the scenes in which all this stuff happens. There are no shortcuts or recipes here; you have to think it through.

    O. How do the man's tribal members disapprove? What do they do? Do they meet in secret and talk it over? Do they confront the man? Do they threaten the woman? Again, you have to figure this out and write out the scenes so the reader can see and experience the tribe's opposition to the marriage. One question you need to answer for the reader here is why they oppose this marriage. What is their motivation to oppose the marriage? Again, there are no shortcuts. Think it through.

    A. If you make the collision of D with O concrete and felt, the reader will naturally want to know, "What are they (the couple) going to do?" And what they do will depend on how you frame those first two components, the D and O components.
     
  10. JayG
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    JayG Banned Contributor

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    And mashed potatoes have no bones. So what? She asked and I gave my opinion. Nowhere did I say the story shouldn't/couldn't be written. Are only popular opinions permitted in the forums now?
     
  11. starz07
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    starz07 New Member

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    Thanks for the link! I am going to have to condense the story/idea here to the aforementioned 1000 word limit, but thanks for your comment! :)
     

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