1. MrDaniel2K15

    MrDaniel2K15 New Member

    Sep 5, 2015
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    Plot help

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by MrDaniel2K15, Sep 5, 2015.

    Hi everyone, I'm wanting to write a Special Forces story but i'm struggling with ideas, can anyone help?
    Here are some I've thought of already.
    -A 4 man Navy Seals team infiltrates a North Korean warship but two members are taken prisoner and soon taken to a mountainous base, the remaining members must travel across PyongYang to a safe location to wait on supplies then go after their fellow soldiers.

    - An SAS team receives intelligence that an Afghani General has decided to turn rogue and plans to blow up the Afghani President, the team is sent into Afghanistan to capture him at his rural output, but they discover that he recently moved into a Kabul Hotel as he will be meeting with the Afghan Government. Can they reach the General before he initiates his plan?
  2. Gabcy

    Gabcy Member

    Sep 4, 2014
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    Wichita, KS
    None of us can tell you how to write your story, only give you a direction that you may choose to follow.

    Both are ideas, to be honest, sound like fairly stereotypical action titles -- one of those straight to DVD releases you always find on clearance. You need hooks -- attributes that set your setting apart from the rest, and if your doing the whole 'US Spec-ops/badass" story that can be difficult.

    Have you ever heard of the Snowflake method? It is a writing exercise that I often use myself. You start by describing your entire story in one sentence, then write a paragraph and then an entire page, etc. until you have a decent plot outline.

    As I said, none of us can tell you how or what to write -- that is, oddly enough, the great thing about this art form. It really has no limits. Be as creative as you want.
  3. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll Contributor Contributor

    Aug 8, 2015
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    Where cushions are comfy, and straps hold firm.
    First I would say pick one scenario from however many you have. Then do a whole lot of research on the capabilities/tactics of the specialized unit/s that you want to deploy (along with weapons and all that jazz). Perhaps utilize a map for reference of where you want your setting to take place (to be as accurate as you want). Pretty much try to get a really good strong sense of the characters (flesh them out, or make them as detailed as far as mindset, personality, physical attributes, etc.) Try to see through their eyes and show/tell what they do and experience. You can really write a grueling rescue story, from either of those examples bringing the action, danger, and the possibility of failure.

    Just trying to be helpful. Like the other before me, I can't tell you how to write it, but offer some possible help to get you going.

    Having said that have fun and see what happens, you'll be fine. :D
  4. Capricorn42

    Capricorn42 Member

    Aug 27, 2015
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    For some reason i'm thinking of Ice Station Zebra as a good example of a special forces story with a neat twist, the twist being that the locations (a US submarine and then the north pole base) are both isolated and so the action is condensed into small areas and a handful of people. I imagine this made it easier for MacLean to write as well. Perhaps you could go for a very simple plot - special ops isolated in middle of Syrian conflict, have to dodge and evade all sides to get home... that kind of thing.
  5. KaTrian

    KaTrian A foolish little beast. Staff Supporter Contributor

    Mar 17, 2013
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    I agree with others, what you have here sounds generic so you'd probably want to have some kind of twist to set it apart from countless Chris Ryan and Andy McNab titles out there. On the other hand, what you can do is give the plan (save the president), but then turns out the plan or the plot is not what the ops thought it'd be. Maybe the General was framed or something. Or you can handicap the team so that completing their mission becomes very difficult and dangerous, this way taking them out of their comfort zone (if such a thing even exists when you're an SAS op / SEAL).
  6. Emberi Homa

    Emberi Homa New Member

    Sep 15, 2015
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    Sometimes, the best thing to do is write. You have two basic premises. Try writing either of them out. Take your time. Get to know your characters.

    Which actually brings me to another strategy: learn your characters, and then base your plot around their internal struggles. A few "meet your character" activities are as follows-

    1) Write about your character cooking.
    2) Write about your character at work.
    3) Write about your character meeting an old friend/enemy/acquaintance after ten years.
    (These three examples are taken from a book about writing, called The Lie That Tells a Truth)​

    Simple activities like the above three can help you figure out your character's mannerisms, behaviors and reactions, and history. Once you learn these things, sometimes you figure out your plot.

    For example, if your character lost their dog and is now afraid to lose anyone else, what is an external conflict that will push at their internal conflict? You isolate them, make them lose someone else, introduce them to a character who they must overcome this fear for so the two can be friends/lovers/whatever. And so on.

    Basically, however you go about figuring out your plot, don't just think. Write something. Always, write, write, write. And then think about what you've written and focus on what aspects of your story you feel strongest about or most interested in.

    If you want to write a story, do it. You can always go back and make it more complex/ unique/ better/ whatever.

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