Plot typically refers to the events and their ordering in a work of narrative fiction. Use this tag for questions regarding plotting, outlining, and narrative arc.

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I'm wondering if my story is too close to 'The Parent Trap'. Can anyone please help? [duplicate]

So, it's about a girl whom finds out that she's gonna be step-sisters with her enemy. She gets he sister (whom is staying with her grandma) to live with her again to stop the wedding. The enemy is ...
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Using “show not tell” while characters are planning for something that happens

In a narrative I'm writing, the characters have to plan an escape from a facility. The thing is, they'll be doing the actual escape in the chapter following them planning. I know usually the right way ...
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Interwoven story arcs (for video) - guidelines so viewers will not get lost?

I am trying to create a documentary about the history of a sports team, and have identified some compelling story arcs. However, as we know in reality, stories do not begin and end one at a time: ...
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Would a redemption story be a coming of age plot

I want to write a story about a man in a bad place in his life and how he finds his way back to his destiny. This seems to be to be a redemption story. Looking at Monkeys with Typewriters, it seems ...
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The Subplot: What to do when it is only loosely tied to the main plot?

The Background: I'm writing a novel that is set in the working quarters of a cruise ship. It's named after the "stage identitiy" of the main characters. (Let's call her Nancy.) All the subplots I have ...
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Can I change scene and characters in the next chapter?

So I have been questioning myself about this: when I'm writing and done with a chapter and I am about to start the next one, can I start with a different scene and others characters like in another ...
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Are these dual plots or a plot plus a big subplot?

This is an extension to an earlier post. Below are some summaries for a novel outline using the Snowflake Method. I am looking for clarification if sections A and B are dual plots, of if section B ...
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Is it possible to outline a dual plot novel using the “Snowflake Method” or other method?

I am interested in learning the Snowflake Method to outline a novel. Question is: I'd like to write dual plot novel. One part is science fiction set in the near future. The other part is a fantasy ...
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Is killing a character to further the plot necessarily a bad thing?

I've heard quite a few complaints about character deaths being used to further the plot. They say it's boring and overdone and mention that there are plenty of other ways to get to the same point ...
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How To Develop A Character For A Character-Driven Story?

What is essential for a character-driven story - except, obviously, appearance?
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Do You Use A Specific Set Of Questions For Developing Your Character [closed]

So what do you ask them? Do you have a questionnaire?
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How do you force a turning point in a narrative that is supposed to be precisely about the lack of such devices?

Please, before flagging this question as subjective or generic, take a moment to read it through. IMO this is a valid, specific question, albeit a bit complex. To try and unpack the admittedly ...
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The origin of multiple 'plotlines' tabular diagram?

Where did the concept of multiple parallel plotlines (that may or may not interact and converge) originate? These days they're also known as throughlines, subplots, narrative/character arcs, series. ...
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What are some techniques for deciding which of two or more plot directions to go with?

I have always wanted to write a book but have never actually taken the time to do so. There are many things that hold me back but one of them is that I often come up with story lines in my mind. As I ...
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How to think of a plot in 5 minutes

I have an English high school exam in five days in which I will be given 2-3 prompts e.g. A story which includes the sentence, "I could not not believe when my neighbour walked right past me" or a ...
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Why does the villain always win right before the hero defeats him?

One common setup for a story goes like this: We have the heroes on one side We have the villains on the other side The bad guy has an evil plot that will cause some undesirable result The heroes ...
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How to write believable “Man vs self” plots

Context introduction In my story the protagonist is both curious and fearful. He wants to know what is in a forest but is too afraid to go inside. He is also distracted by his basic needs for food and ...
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How can I keep secret a major detail known to the POV protagonist?

How do you write a story where the point-of-view character knows something, but you want to keep it a secret from the reader until later in the story? How do you effectively suppress a vital detail ...
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1answer
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How to decide if a plot twist worth doing?

There's a major piece of information in my story, which I could either make tell right away - or else keep it a secret, and use it as a plot twist later. I'm having a hard time choosing which way to ...
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How do I keep a journey sequence going?

In my story, my characters have to go on a journey, plus it's medieval. (So original right?) Anywho, they've already been captured by road robbers once and escaped. Also, they've stumbled upon a town ...
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how to write a sports game scene?

The main character is on a sports team, and I want to describe games, but I don't know how to without having to explain every point or without explaining it enough. I want it to be a page or two long ...
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1answer
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how can I make my main character interesting and not bland?

All my supporting characters are really cool and have their habits and problems and backstories but I just feel so lost when it comes to my main character. She just seems to be floating around in the ...
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When a character tells a long story, is it always an info dump?

I have two characters who don't get along and are sniping at each other from the moment they meet in the book. Throughout the story, they keep ramping it up. At a certain point, one character is still ...
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How can I create an inter-connected plot across a series?

I am an aspiring author, and I have recently just begun developing my first novel. It is a series, but I have engineered the first novel to be a standalone in case the series falls through. When I ...
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Inciting incident in Fantasy

In my fantasy story, there is about 10,000 words before the inciting incident. I originally intended to land the end of my story at about 40,000 words. This is partially due to the fact that a lot of ...
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How to write negative events without laying blame in an insulting way

My current project is historical fiction, fifteenth century. There were quite a few bad things happening all over the world, and my book picks up on a few of them. With simply laying the information ...
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I have a race of winged characters in my story, but I'm struggling as to how and why? [closed]

I know why; they're cool, and they have a deep yearning to be free and with the air, which'll be a major theme in the story. But... I don't know how to explain their wings. I don't want them to be a ...
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Writing Action In A fictional Journal

I have written a story in the form of a journal. It's about a man who is going through a separation/divorce, living alone in an unfurnished apartment; now lonely and longing for companionship. ...
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How to write a story that spans decades

I'm looking for techniques to write a fantasy story (A song of ice and fire style) but the problem is the duration of the story : The first three years there are lot of plots, and betrayals. After ...
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When should my amnesiac protagonist regain memory?

It is very hard for me to ask this without an overwhelming amount of information on how the plot goes, so this is just a warning of what's ahead... I am writing a fictional story which begins with an ...
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I'm scared that my story is plagiarizing another story

I am working on my debut story. In my freetime, I write another story that will be the start of a series. The series consists of Steampunk fairytale retellings. Lately, I have been worrying that it ...
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3answers
153 views

My Conflict Doesn't End at the Climax. What can I do?

I am currently writing a short book. I've neared the end of the plot, but now I'm seeing a problem: my conflict isn't ending at the climax. The climax should always be the point where all of the ...
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How to collect my ideas in one story?

I start to feel that i'm mad. I make storys from everything that i see on the street. A dialogue, an interesting personality, a funny couple, a hard question or a perfect view to write about. Words ...
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What should you do if the events in your story happen in real life just when you finish writing it?

I was finishing my novella when I heard about the terrorist attacks in Paris (I pray for the souls of the victims). I was surprised to know that circumstances revolving around the violent attacks were ...
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Resources for learning how to craft plots

The main problem for someone moving from non-fiction to fiction is the development of a plot. It is especially frustrating to someone who already knows how to string words together and "write well", ...
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How to move from writing scenes to a short plot?

I've been working professionally as a part-time freelancer journalist for the past couple of years. Over that time I feel I've got a good grasp of how, technically, to construct an engaging piece of ...
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Can the protagonist lose his strength without losing the reader?

In studying writing, I've learned that you need to give your protagonist something - usually a quality - that makes the reader want him to win. Without this quality, the reader doesn't care what ...
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How important is a story's introduction?

I would feel like an introduction would be the first impressions and knowledge someone has of a book, along with the cover, just like a good movie. However, you can just skip a book intro. I've heard ...
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What makes the death of a character satisfying?

My wife and I were watching a movie where one of the main characters died shortly after being reunited with his long lost love. His death was not meaningless -- he died defending his only son, but it ...
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How can I surprise my readers with a surprise betrayal?

In my action/adventure story, the two main protagonists are rescuing the injured victim and escaping the dungeon. (Or jail cell. Or whatever.) Once the protagonists have rescued the victim, I want to ...
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Creating the goal of a scene when the main character is passive

In my current writing, I've been having some trouble with the plot, specifically with going from an outline detailing what I need, to an outline detailing how I get there. I think the problem (or at ...
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When having a plot twist, does there have to be foreshadowing of it?

Can it just pop out of nowhere, or does it have to be something that was slightly mentioned before that only expert readers would catch.
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Is this too much of a coincidence?

Before the book starts, my main character worked in a bad place where she was attacked by a boy who was detained and gets his memories taken. When the book starts, she's had an accident so she has no ...
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Connecting my plot to different locations in my world

In my world, there all sorts of places that I'd like to include in my book but I have yet to find sound reasons to include more a handful of them. How can I connect several distinct locations to my ...
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291 views

Starting a book with a scene from the middle

So. I'm currently working on a novel. (It's my first ever.) I need all the help I can get. I had an idea where I start with a scene which is close to the climax, where the main character is to be ...
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3answers
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How to turn an unknown detail in the story into a mystery instead of a lacking detail?

I mean, how to make so that an undefined information in the plot be considered a mystery, i.e. an intentional unanswered question, instead of: ー So, then what? ー Well, this is an unknown fact ...
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Getting past a dead end

I've been working on a screenplay for a while now. But I seem to have reached quite the dead end. My question is, what do you guys do, to get past a sticking point. Especially when you don't want to ...
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Should I write the actual death scene?

I am writing a novel, and in one part, a boy falls off the building. I feel like it would be very gory. Most people said to write in great detail, but then some people say to write what I know. I feel ...
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Is there a name for stories which weave initially separate viewpoints into a single plot?

Is there a name for the technique where a writer introduces several separate characters, develops each character's plot line separately - perhaps in separate chapters - and gradually weaves them ...
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Can the main conflict be the inner conflict?

I've recently been having trouble with developing plots. The plots I created seemed heavily sequential. No matter how many twists or complications I put in, they always seemed dry, proceeding from one ...