1. Pinkymcfiddle

    Pinkymcfiddle Banned

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    Creating scenes...

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Pinkymcfiddle, Mar 4, 2017.

    Does anyone use the: -

    Scene 1: -
    Goal
    Conflict
    Disaster

    Scene 2: -
    Reaction
    Dilemma
    Decision

    Rinse and repeat...

    Method of creating scenes?

    By nature I'm a pantser and I thought I'd give this a go to give some structure to my work.

    If not this, are there any other methods people employ?
     
  2. rktho

    rktho Contributor Contributor

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    I have no methods for this. I guess I'm a pantser as well.
     
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  3. Pinkymcfiddle

    Pinkymcfiddle Banned

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    There is nothing wrong with it, Stephen King is a bloody successful pantser... but lets face it, his third acts are often lacking.
     
  4. JE Loddon

    JE Loddon Active Member

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    I've tried to incorporate something similar into my planning, but it ends up going out of the window. Writing needs to be a little bit more organic, I feel. That said, I do strongly advocate having a solid outline in place.
     
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  5. Lew

    Lew Contributor Contributor

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    Nothing specifically preplanned, though each scene is more less there in my head. BTW this approach, especially for a long story (mine is 240K words) gives a very episodic or TV series feel to the story. There is always a conflict going on in each scene, but the threads link up to the main plot's conflict/resolution/denouement. As a result, the readers seem to be swept up by the crisis of the moment, and that is no sooner resolved, than another starts building.
     
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  6. Michael Pless

    Michael Pless Senior Member

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    I agree. One thing I noticed is that despite my (at times meticulous) planning, the proposed actions just don't seem right for a character. I have outlines, and I can't actually write unless I know what's going to happen. But there's an event in my latest novel that I hadn't even considered until I "got there", and then it just seemed mandatory.

    The broad outline, most events, and the ending are pretty much as I started out with though.
     
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  7. Stormsong07

    Stormsong07 Contributor Contributor

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    I keep this in the back of my mind, but I do not strictly adhere to it. I write what comes naturally, what feels natural for my character. If I get stuck, I find it helpful to think, Ok, what was my character's goal for this scene? What is stopping them from achieving it? How do they solve it? And that often helps me get back on track. But I don't necessarily write it in exactly that format every time.
     
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  8. Lew

    Lew Contributor Contributor

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    In about half of the chapters I wrote, they turned out differently, sometimes significantly different than I expected. Even the final chapter, the ending, bore no resemblance to what I expected... and they turned out better, because that is what my characters told me to write.
     
  9. Anna100

    Anna100 Active Member

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    I'm a pantser too. So, whenever I see these things, my head starts to ache. :D I'm thinking how that applies to whatever I'm writing at the moment, but, in the end I can't do it. I have tried both outlining/planning and writing without knowing what comes next. When I do outlines/plans/whatever, I realise I never really follow them anyway. I always have a vague idea of the scenes in my head, though. And I kind of just follow that.
    Maybe one day I will see these outlines and think "Oh, that's how it works." It's a learning process and it's probably good to try out different things and see what works the best for you. I don't know, maybe they are helpful, but I just don't know how to use them?
     
  10. Lew

    Lew Contributor Contributor

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    I have done technical writing far longer than I have done creative writing. I literally start with the outline, in header and subheader styles, and build my table of contents before I even start writing. Then I assemble my material and fill in the blanks. I have a reputation as a machine gun writer, who can crank out a hundred page technical something or other in a week or two, that looks like it was staffed by a dozen people. In fact a dozen people usually can't match what I do. So why am I a pantser when it comes to creative writing?
    1. I rebel against following my highly structured technical style in my creative writing. I feel that, while my technical writing is not boring, it is also not exciting, either. I fear that if I followed an outline, I would suck the life out of my story. Like my technical writing, it would be informative but not exciting.
    2. Since writing for me is fun, not knowing what comes next gives me the feel of going to down to watch a TV series... I want to see what happens next, and that makes writing fun, not work.

    Debates between planners and pantsers are like debates between democrats and republicans, little agreement is possible, and in fact, most of us are somewhere in between. So @Anna100, pick the style that works for you.
     
  11. BREEZER

    BREEZER Member

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    Yes, I do use this. It helps me keep on track on whats important in the scene or what I'm trying to achieve.

    The other thing I add to every scene is:
    3 things this scene is doing. (At least three things so that all scenes are are doing more than one thing)

    for example

    1. Establish's backstory of protagonist father
    2. This also deepens our understanding of the protagonist
    3. Introduces a new character (mother)
    4. Initiates the idea that there is conflict between mother and protagonist

    So I actually specifically list all the 'things' the scene is doing, as well us outline the goal, disaster, response etc etc
     
  12. Infel

    Infel Contributor Contributor

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    Have you read Swain's book? It's really damn good and I definitely recommend it. I don't think the scene/sequel thing works in EVERY circumstance, but I think its an excellent tool to have when you need it.
     
  13. Pinkymcfiddle

    Pinkymcfiddle Banned

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    Skim read. Particularly when used as a tool to critique your own work, it enables you to restructure what you have written in a far more compelling way.
     
  14. Anna100

    Anna100 Active Member

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    We all have different approaches (which is good). I think I'm going to stick with pantsing for now, because that's what I'm most comfortable with. :p
     
  15. NigeTheHat

    NigeTheHat Contributor Contributor

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    I tried it, didn't really work for me. At the moment I'm planning things out a bit more like:

    Scene 3: Madoc tells Tristan about the boar

    - So Madoc's hanging around outside the chief's hut with Tristan and Gawain and he's like 'there was this boar, thing was fucking huge' and Tristan's like 'did you catch it' and Madoc's like 'you kidding? No-one's catching that thing' and Tristan all 'I could've caught it'.

    Sketch out scenes in that kind of semi-spoken outline and then turn them into something that sounds written afterward.
     
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