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  1. Ravigyne

    Ravigyne Member

    Aug 1, 2007
    Likes Received:

    Need a bit of help with plot development

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Ravigyne, Aug 1, 2007.

    I have been writing a novel and I am trying to follow what could possibly be a unique path with it. The goal is to keep the characters in the dark as to what they are doing. Essentially putting the lines of fate into the story. I have come up with a problem or two with this approach.

    My first question being, should I also keep the reader in the dark as to the over all plot of the book? If so how do I place at least some foreshadowing in there to keep the reader going?

    The second is that if keeping the reader in the dark as to the main antagonists is a bad idea, then how do I introduce the antagonists? Nothing I have written so far on the base storyline leads up to it, so I am seeing that an inclusion of things on the bad guys will be far out of place and put the reader off.

    I don't want to follow the standard switch off between the protagonists and antagonists between chapters. I want to follow a unique path with it. Any ideas will be helpful and greatly appreciated.
  2. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

    May 19, 2007
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    Massachusetts, USA
    To take your last point first, I recommend working with tried and true narrative techniques. Being different for the sake of being different always comes forth as a gimmick - because it is. Win the readers with solid writing, interesting characters, and a well crafted plot.

    Now to the fiesr question. The plot should unfold naturally. No one in the story should know in detail where the plot is going, and this holds true of the reader as well. The reader should be a silent participantm surrounded by the action but invisible to the characters. But give enough information so the reader has some notion where the plot appears to be going, until complications force the plot to deflect.

    One approach to the second question is not to make it entirely clear at first who are the protagonists and who are their antagonists. Let the reader get to know the characters, before you focus too much on the protagonists.
  3. Booker

    Booker New Member

    Mar 12, 2011
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    Does the main character have a motive?

    There's nothing necessarily wrong with hiding the antagonist's actions. Many mysteries, for instance, work by hiding what the villain is doing from both the reader and the main character (usually the detective) until the climax. (E.g. Da Vinci Code) But the main character must face a problem he/she is driven to solve. In the case of the mystery, the problem is that dead bodies keep turning up. The main character has the motivation to identify the killer and prevent any more murders.

    So the question is, what problem does your main character face that he/she must solve? What is at stake for him/her? That will drive the plot.

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