1. Rewrite The Ending

    Rewrite The Ending Member

    May 23, 2017
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    How do you come up with a premise for your story?

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Rewrite The Ending, Aug 7, 2020.

    I feel stuck on knowing what I really want to write about. I have some themes, some worldbuilding and magic system, some basic things about my protagonist and antagonist.

    I mean, with the themes, I think I want to write about women and the pressure of expectations and privilege and idealization of your life and your image. But what is the story?

    I don't have a premise. A plot.

    How do you figure out what you want to write about?
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2020
  2. Medazza

    Medazza Active Member

    Dec 29, 2015
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    Don’t you have what you need? Your female character is going to be forced to do something that is out of her comfort zone and against societal norms?
    That’s got to be your framework hasn’t it?
  3. Aled James Taylor

    Aled James Taylor Contributor Contributor

    Sep 7, 2013
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    It's great that you have issues to raise and address. This will give your book depth and significance. Think of what you want to say about those issues and how to illustrate that message with practical examples.

    Generally, a plot consists of: The protagonist having some kind of problem, then he/she works towards a solution, and finally, he/she achieves a solution (not necessarily the one they were working towards).

    You could have your protagonist being forced into an arranged marriage, with the subsequent lifestyle of housewife and mother, and being subordinate to her husband. Then she could work out all manner of schemes to evade her fate, only to finally fall in love with her pre-chosen partner.
  4. J.T. Woody

    J.T. Woody The Ole Frazzle-Dazzle Contributor

    Feb 5, 2018
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    Do you have characters? What do those characters want? In the world you created, what restricts your character(s) from doing what they want? You said it yourself, "the pressure of expectations and privilege"
    Also, think about what steps you want your characters to take to over come those restrictions and challenges. Is there someone or something holding them back? How? If its a person, what are they like? Why do they do what they do to restrict the character?
    If there is magic involved, why is it important? How does it help or hinder the character(s)? Whats the characters social status?

    All of these are just brainstorming questions to get the juices flowing :)
  5. Xoic

    Xoic Prognosticator of Arcana Ridiculosum Contributor

    Dec 24, 2019
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    Way, way out there
    Sometimes that's what a first draft is for, you figure it out by writing.
  6. Seiya

    Seiya New Member

    Jul 31, 2020
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    My stories are usually daydreamed in. The characters, the world, the premise, then I start writing. I normally can't force myself to write just because I'm in front of keyboard telling my hands to type something.
    Surely you must have have had a great idea pop up and that's why you want to write? not just writing for writing's sake.
  7. TheOneWhoTriesTooHard

    TheOneWhoTriesTooHard New Member

    Aug 28, 2020
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    Somewhere in the vicinity of Betelgeuse
    I'm super late, but it sounds like you have a good framework. If you have some themes and knowledge about your main characters, start trying to brainstorm ways to connect them, and story ideas/events that would connect back to or demonstrate your themes. Of course, you still will need to come up with something to write using these things, but having a place to start and a direction to go in will help you a lot since you can kind of narrow your focus.

    If you're really stuck, maybe research some books/stories with similar plots for inspiration. Just be careful not to plagiarize, obviously.

    And if it's still not working, give it some time. A lot of time, story ideas will pop into my head because I'm doing something or I'm reminded of something, and rarely when I'm actively seeking them out.

    Good luck :)
  8. Selbbin

    Selbbin The Moderating Cat Staff Contributor

    Oct 16, 2012
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    What I want to write about is usually discovered by what I can be bothered writing about. I have a zillion ideas, but few I work on. Even fewer that truly interest me enough to spend enormous amounts of time and energy working on.

    While I like to plan things out, most of my best stuff has been built and developed as I went, with no clear idea of the story to begin with. I had a seed of an idea that grew. But a better allegory would be looking for gold, because we know most of what we write is useless dust, but that nugget is in there somewhere.

    To find gold you gotta mine. You can either set up an established operation in a known spot and keep working at it, or hunt around, trying this place and that, looking for leads to the prize. But you do need to know roughly where to dig and when to give up on a spot in case you're wasting your time.
    jannert likes this.
  9. Lifeline

    Lifeline South. Staff Supporter Contributor

    Oct 12, 2015
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    On the Road.
    What do you feel passionate about?

    If you're not planning to write dedicated to a certain genre and with the goal of making a living off writing, I'd advise to identify what makes you argue the hardest with friends and families, and then build your story around that passion. Create characters that have trouble with your theme and make them learn and grow around it, and you'll have a nugget of inspiration that'll never fail you—because you as the person behind the story will have a stake in its growth.

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