1. Ryan Elder

    Ryan Elder Senior Member

    Apr 15, 2015
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    How can I intercut between a dozen action scenes, and make it good?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Ryan Elder, Apr 12, 2016.

    My story is a thriller where the police want to bust a gang, and it leads to a big shootout, in the gang's attempt to defend themselves and get away which leads to hostage situations that end in tragedy.

    Now in my story, the police have to go to about a dozen different locations at least, to arrest members at each one, thus not giving the gang time to call ahead and warn the others.

    But I am having trouble envisioning how I can cut back and forth constantly between a dozen different shootouts and make it good, without there being too much going on for the reader to possibly follow, as oppose to the entire shootout taking place at one location?

    What do you think? Is there a way I can approach it where I can make it work better? I feel like the cutting back and forth can get in the away of the suspense, since I am constantly cutting away from each one, perhaps, and then you have to put them each on hold, till you come back to them all.

    What do you think?
  2. Malisky

    Malisky Fuzz Overdriver Contributor

    Apr 11, 2012
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    The Middle of Nowhere The Center of Everywhere
    I can't really envision clearly what you mean so I might not get this right. I'll give it a shot though. I think of it like a game with levels. The last should be the most difficult. You follow your main character or characters. The other minor characters should be used as tools. Maybe he gets the briefing info he needs in order to strike down from his walkie-talkie or whatever.

    Do you have a rough you can send? Even an outline would help in order to see how you connect the scenes or which scenes you are reffering to. You know: 1) This happens at this place and Mr. E does that. 2) Then he gets this info and chooses to do that. 3) Etc.

    How many MC's do you have? In what narration do you write? How long do you suspect this theme is going to last? Is it going to be the end?
  3. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Contributor

    Jul 5, 2010
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    California, US
    I wouldn't dramatize them all. Stick with the scene involving the main character. Thrillers quite often have multiple arrests or police actions going on at once, but the author doesn't dramatize them all.
    zoupskim likes this.
  4. zoupskim

    zoupskim Contributor Contributor

    Jan 11, 2015
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    You don't see the Elves fight in The Two Towers(Book), they just talk about it after Helms Deep is secured. Show one or two police captures that have to do with a MC or a significant plot element, then let the rest be assumed. Maybe have a scene were they discuss all the bad guys they captured.

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