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How Do You Plot Out Your Story? : Conversation question • Page 3 • Writing Forum | WritersDigest.com

How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Every month in Writer's Digest's InkWell section, we pose a question related to the writing life. Tell us your thoughts.
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kentsmith9
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby kentsmith9 » Tue Aug 26, 2014 1:03 am

For my first (current) novel, my friends and I discussed the story line on a long 500+ mile road trip to Vegas, in Vegas, and returning from Vegas. We eventually started creating a skeleton outline and then started to study the details of our settings. We are writing a disaster-thriller and we are working toward having it be as highly realistic as possible. One of my pet peeves in a story is a loss of continuity in the story itself or with reality. Unless it is true science fiction or fantasy, I expect anything human or earthly to be bound by the same laws of physics and science that I live with myself.

Therefore when I describe the northern edge of Sibera in April, I want to have my description match reality for the 0.1% of the people who might read the book and know what it is really like there. Part of my OCD I guess. :mrgreen:

Since our story takes place around the world as the story unfolds, I needed to track my characters in their venues. I actually created a spreadsheet on the computer to track each character's progress through his or her story arc. Mainly the major characters are outlined in detail, with minor characters not more than one or two sentences.

Then when I am about to work on a scene from the outline, I flesh out more of the details just before I write it. I read the post by Fictional Cowboy on the by Rachael Aaron and recognized the knowledge branch is what I recently started doing to help my writing speed and flow. Now I need to see if I can expand into the other two directions as well.

During my research to write this novel, I found that this genre (with a little soft sci-fi rolled in) should be in the 95K words range. So I am tracking that number as I write out each scene. I pretty much know the last words of book one already, in order to set up the close and cliff hanger for book two, so I need to do what I can to keep on track to that end. My spreadsheet is doing that for me so I can focus on the overall story.

I will have to say that much of my inspiration for the actual character dialogue comes to me as the characters begin to speak. The more I write on their behalf, the more real they become to me and the more they speak for themselves. I guess I should be paying them. :D

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MoonYu
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby MoonYu » Tue Sep 23, 2014 11:15 am

While I can sometimes start writing and see where the story takes me, most of the time I need to know where I want it to end before starting.

The rest can then fill the in the story. Without knowing the end, the stories tend to grow stale to me and I move on.
Moon's Place
There are worse places to be...

Charles_Habakkuk
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby Charles_Habakkuk » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:19 pm

If I find myself ruminating on a particular environment, I come up with a couple of character dynamics that would make the situation sad/funny/frustrating and work it out.

I let the plot bow to the characters, because characters are infinitely more interesting than plot.
Writing about faith and mental illness in southern Indiana.

http://charleshabakkuk.wordpress.com/

James A. Ritchie
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby James A. Ritchie » Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:50 am


James A. Ritchie
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby James A. Ritchie » Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:56 am


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MookyMcD
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby MookyMcD » Sat Oct 11, 2014 11:57 am


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Oleg Hasanov
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby Oleg Hasanov » Wed Jan 28, 2015 3:02 am

I'm writing a novel and using the Snowflake Method. For me personally it really works.
What don't kill you make you more strong.

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guydevalmont
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Re: How Do You Plot Out Your Story?

Postby guydevalmont » Mon Feb 16, 2015 2:43 am


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