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What Is Plot Creation and Development?

Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Cogito, May 23, 2008.

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  1. Charmichan

    Charmichan Member

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    Best informational read everrrrr!!!!


    Cogito Dai Sensie .... THANK YOU! ^______^
    You pretty much summed up writing 101 on this post.
    Reading this helped me tame my ideas and organize them to see the bigger picture of storytelling.

    Again, thanks for sharing!!!!
     
  2. NateSean

    NateSean Active Member

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    At what point does it stop being, "Help me with this one point in my story that I'm struggling with" and turns into, "Write the whole story for me please. Oh and put my name on it so that people think it's mine."
     
  3. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Honestly? It'd be rare indeed for me to turn to someone else to solve any of my storyline dilemmas.

    Where's the fun in having someone else come up with my story points? Where is the imagination?

    I do recognize that someone could paint themselves into a plot corner, and legitimately ask for help extricating themselves without having to rewrite major parts of the story.

    But to ask other people to help you map out your story? That isn't writing.
     
    kfmiller likes this.
  4. NateSean

    NateSean Active Member

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    I know Tolkein got stuck while writing Lord of the Rings. It took him years before he could figure out where to go from the Dwarf cave, I believe. I wonder if he bounced it off of his good friend CS Lewis at any point.
     
  5. Elgaisma

    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    There is a difference between bouncing ideas around and getting something to trigger or use and develop and asking someone to write it for you.

    There are a lot of ideas in my book I wouldn't have had or even considered without asking for help and input. I feel a great deal of satisfaction in my work no one else could have taken that particular combination and written it in that fashion or used the ideas in quite the same manner.

    The final product is mine however I will be adding a long acknowledgement page ;)
     
  6. Serieve

    Serieve Member

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    Hm... this thread has cleared up a major misconception that I never knew I had: namely, that plot is storyline and vice versa. When I think of plot, I always picture that diagram of rising action, climax, and falling action. I think that I assumed that, since the storyline contains that rising action, climax, and falling action, the diagram essentially depicts the storyline, too, which made the plot and the storyline seem like the same thing. But now I see that the diagram is merely a single structure, the storyline a fleshing out and an intersection of multiple structures. (Right? That sounds right, I think.)

    Thank you very much! I feel like I've been saved from some awful and embarrassing future mistakes.
     
  7. Reggie

    Reggie I Like 'Em hot "N Spicy Contributor

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    I think this helps us put our stories together, and I see why ideas isn't as valuable until the story is completely written.

    I have one question about the motivation though. Is the motivation the reason why the actor wants to reach the goal? And the revolution is what the character will do after he passes or fail the goal?
     
  8. Corbyn

    Corbyn Lost in my own head Contributor

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    If anyone would like it ... I took some notes at a writing group recently and I got this brain storm of a plot arch that just made everything come together for me... So if anyone would like a copy I'd be glad to email it...

    As someone who's struggling to learn the basics of the craft it's helped TONS
     
  9. Gothic Vampire Queen

    Gothic Vampire Queen Member

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    Thank you for posting this.

    Btw, Cog, I like the link in your sig. Namely, this one:
     
  10. D-Doc

    D-Doc Active Member

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    I like how a lot of the best plots are very simple at heart. They just have a lot of depth and detail added to the characters, atmosphere, ect.
     
  11. CMacgregor93

    CMacgregor93 Member

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    Reading over this thread, my main issue has been storyline. I can get theme and plot right, but storyline has always been something i struggle at. Rarely I nail it, but most of the time I have problems with it. Then again, It really all depends on the story. If i am writing something TV length then I'll be good, but when its Film or Theatre, then it gets all clogged up and i feel that i want to add too much or not enough at all.
     
  12. Salt

    Salt New Member

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    Do you think you could give an example of plot structure in terms of a simple story I know and understand? Maybe Harry Potter or something, 'cause I know that story inside out.
     
  13. Kay Lesgo

    Kay Lesgo Member

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    This is a very useful post Cogito. Thanks!
     
  14. skulbaka

    skulbaka New Member

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    So try to think in these terms rather than focusing on whether the storyline is appealing in and of itself.[/QUOTE]

    Even in literature and art, no man who bothers about originality will ever be original: whereas if you simply try to tell the truth (without caring twopence how often it has been told before) you will, nine times out of ten, become original without ever having noticed it. -C.S. Lewis
     
  15. marktx

    marktx Contributing Member

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    I am finding this to be completely true. My protagonist is on a personal journey of self-redefinition, although he himself doesn't see it. He thinks he is just righting an external wrong. Since I am clear on where he is and where he is going internally, and I am also clear on how the external battle ends, the point-by-point action itself is the easiest part because it just flows from asking the question: "Okay, now that he's here, what would he do next?" and then asking "Now that he's done that, what are the consequences?"
     
  16. marktx

    marktx Contributing Member

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    It's always fine to turn to someone else to solve your storyline dilemmas...as long as the person you're turning to is one of your characters. :D
     
  17. Darkkin

    Darkkin Reflection of a nobody Contributor

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    LOL. Good point. :D
     
  18. Annojo

    Annojo New Member

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    In a nutshell ;)
     
  19. Genavano

    Genavano New Member

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    Just the kind of thing I joined this forum for - thanks.
     
  20. Brainstem

    Brainstem New Member

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    Very helpful to read this! I saw someone had asked for an example of a common story with regards to plot vs. storyline, so I thought I could help!

    Star Wars! It's main plot, as defined in this thread, is one of Luke Skywalker (the actor), a naïve farmboy, embarking on a quest to bring peace to the galaxy (the goal) by stopping the Empire (the opposition) due to its tyrannical rule over most of the known galaxy (the motivation).

    The storyline is everything in between. George Lucas structured Star Wars around the monomyth, which gives the skeleton of the storyline. If you can create a chronology of events, if you could write a timeline of what happened, that's your storyline.

    What I'm curious about, however, is if I could get an example of a story with no plot. It's easy to think of a plot with no story, at least for me, but the reverse seems difficult to conceptualize. Counter-examples, after all, are a great way to learn!
     
  21. AlexinDelhi

    AlexinDelhi Member

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    Great post. I liked it. Thanks!
     
  22. captain kate

    captain kate Active Member

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    Plots can work in many ways. You can have a over arcing plot, like Lucas did and JMS did with Babylon 5, which can contain smaller story arcs, or each story can be the part of the larger arc. A large character arc, more so then just the plot alone, carried Star Wars. Character arcs, and plots, go hand in hand. Luke's travels from a simple farm boy to being the savior of the galaxy in Return of the Jedi, and the things that happened to him in between, made the character arc. Compare that against the plot, and you'll find the arc really created the plot.
     
  23. johann77

    johann77 Member

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    How many different ways a plot and conflict can manifest themselves is impossible to comprehend. But then again this is good.;)
     
  24. Hwaigon

    Hwaigon Contributing Member Reviewer

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    It may be me who's outlandish, but I've always considered the storyline as one of the less important attributes of a story.
    I've always felt the power of how of the story.
    The same applies to one's life; their life may be a sequence of boring events to a stranger, but the person may very well have been living the life to the full.
     
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  25. Aesthetic Phenomenon

    Aesthetic Phenomenon New Member

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    great post. thank you.

    i am new and i just wanna say i'm glad i found this website.
    maybe later on i will share some of my ideas and such.
     

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