1. Helvetica
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    Helvetica Senior Member

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    What is your method for creating a plot?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Helvetica, Jun 24, 2010.

    This has probably been asked before, but what is your method for creating a plot?

    I tend to write short horror / dark fiction. Many times, I'll have a "what if" moment, as in: "what if the pizza delivery guy were a vampire?" then I'll work from there, trying to imagine how my protagonist would deal with the situation.

    Many times, a twist ending will pop into my head, as in: "what if a man were responsible for the death of his mother by proxy?" Then I'd work backwards to the beginning of the story.

    Do you have a certain method you've recognized?
     
  2. theSkaBoss
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    theSkaBoss Member

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    When I have a dream that I find really cool, interesting, or emotionally stirring for me, it tends to stick in my head, and those dreams tend to become the basis for a storyline or part of a storyline. This is because either the dream has managed to become important to me, or because it's really cool, and I continue thinking about it and letting it evolve in my mind until it has been stripped of dream illogic and refined with waking logic, and then I think of a point I want to make with this setting or idea (which is the theme of a story, if I'm not mistaken,) and voila: my plots.
     
  3. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    I don't have a set method it's pretty abstract. It usually comes to me. I think on it and about it where it can go what it's potential is. I think about what the goal of the book is what the characters are trying to achieve. Then it just comes. Usually the initial idea sorta comes out of no where or from reading something that evokes a creative state of mind in me.
     
  4. jeanne
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    jeanne Member

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    I never really create a plot, I just create characters and I will get a plot automaticly around them
     
  5. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Strong impressions from deans becomes the seed of stories
     
  6. rhsexton
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    rhsexton Member

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    Before I started writing, I played RPGs - table top, with pencil, paper and dice. You know, like D&D. When running those games, I would come up with the main villian. The top guy. The one who orchestrates the entire devious plot that the players have to unravel. Then I work backwards (sort of). I create his/her followers, the crimes they've committed, their setup and base of operation, etc. Once I have enough detail, I present clues to the players and let them work their way through it.

    For the most part, I do the same for the books I write. I have a cast of good guys who have to follow the clues to solve the crimes and catch the bad guys. The only difficulty is doing it in such a way that allows the characters to discover the truth on their own, without illogical leaps of understanding that can only come from me already knowing what is really going on.
     
  7. Mantha Hendrix
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    Mantha Hendrix Contributing Member

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    I have no idea, when I think back on things I don't remember their origin. One plot came from thinking about a pair of friends, and where they might end up.

    I suppose I think about what my life could be a lot. Also, once I just thought of one word and a whole seven book series flourished. In short, I have no method.
     
  8. Show
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    Show Contributing Member Contributor

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    I am totally unable to really create a plot from scratch at will. It honestly has to just come to me and then I can start building on that foundation that just appears in my head. Ideas come often enough I guess, so it's not an issue right now.
     
  9. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i don't have a method... the basic plot premise just comes to me and develops as i write...
     
  10. Jane Beryl
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    Jane Beryl Member

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    I enjoy making the characters first. Finding out what they look like, where they live, who do they associate with until I have a whole story unraveling my hands. I find that you have to create the thread of the fabric before you can make the dress.
     
  11. Unit7
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    Unit7 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Usually I just have a couple of characters and a rough idea of what I want in the end. The rest I comes to me as I write.

    Though it doesn't always work out so great. lol
     
  12. Shinn
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    Shinn Banned

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    Me? I write normally write the ending to a scene and work my way backwards, coming up with all kinds of ideas on how the characters got there in the first place. It's quite effective IMHO :)
     
  13. Irish87
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    Irish87 Contributing Member

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    Wonderment? Alcohol perhaps? Well, no, I think booze kills the good parts of your brain. Then again, that didn't stop Hemingway... or the dozens and dozens of other great examples of writers addicted to the drink.

    Personally, however, I create stories mostly out of accident. I don't sit down and think of something; it just sort of forms. At times it is born from the influence of others and at times it is nothing but a wild dream birthed in a wandering mind. There's a reason I only sleep about three hours a day and it isn't because I like being tired.
     
  14. Northern Phil
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    Northern Phil Active Member

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    I normally think of a good action scene and from that I will create a story, plot, characters and anything else which is needed to get up to that point.
     
  15. NosceTeIpsum
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    NosceTeIpsum New Member

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    Sometimes its a character that grabs my head, shakes it, and says, "Look what I can do! Look at me! Pick me!" but that doesn't happen very often. Occasionally, a phrase from a book, movie, or television show will spark my interest and my imagination goes from there. "Why and "What if" are questions that I ask myself and others constantly and that's where the plot usually starts.
     
  16. JTheGreat
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    JTheGreat Contributing Member

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    Sometimes I just come up with a concept, or perhaps a character, and if I like that concept or character enough, I'll piece together a plot around them, so they'll come to fruition.

    For example, I imagine this scene where a girl is clinging to the top of the archway in a desperate attempt not to be seen, her long hair clamped between her teeth. Eventually she slips, and tumbles into the arms of my main male character. But, I am conflicted whether or not this female character be my emotionless character, my snarky character, or a mix of the two. Ooh, it seems as though I have a story in the making.

    Good ideas flock to other good ideas. My concept started with the girl hanging onto the archway, and the male character, the emotionless character, and the snarky character all fit the scene so well that they'e become a part of it.
     
  17. erik martin
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    erik martin Contributing Member

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    I might come up with a character or two or a premise, but that doesn't give me a plot. To get that, I focus on where my conflict will be. That's where the essence of my plot will be.
     

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