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Q&A

Posts tagged plot

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Q&A How can I pinpoint a story's moral dilemma?

In this answer, Mark Baker makes a statement about story: All story ideas are basically a variation on one thing. A man (or woman, or child, or small furry animal) has two desires, both of which h...

4 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by icanfathom‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by DPT‭

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+1 −0
Q&A The problem with beginning

I don't mean "sitting down to write", I mean the literal beginning. The story itself starts with my protagonist running. I need to get him to run, then I'll have the rest of it sorted. But won't st...

5 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Irysik‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Canina‭

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Q&A How can you redeem an awful character, who hits close to home?

There is a problem with a redemption arc: Anon is an incredibly powerful god with powers of mysterious origin. In the story, he starts out as bad but is supposed to be redeemed later. There is a p...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Mephistopheles‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Mark Baker‭

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Q&A Is it alright to add scenes that don’t move the plot forwards much but develop relationships/character?

For example, let’s say the main plot is that the characters are on a quest to go find something. Can an author spend three scenes in a row detailing what happens on their journey there, even if the...

6 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by user40771‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by DPT‭

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Q&A What should come first—characters or plot?

I'm starting a new fantasy story, and although I had a loose idea of plot, I began sculpting my characters before writing anything. Creating images of them in my head, developing their personaliti...

7 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by weakdna says reinstate monica‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by ab2‭

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Q&A Can a fight scene, component-wise, be too complex and complicated?

Okay, there is some preliminary information for you to be able to answer this question: There is a sword of great power, a McGuffin, and a destined one who wields it. The destined one has two compa...

5 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by A. Kvåle‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Amadeus‭

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Q&A Alternatives to develop relationships without dialogue

I have to come up with an idea (this is an assignment) for a story between 1 or 2 characters without dialogue and with a length of 90 seconds, so I know it's totally possible, however, when it come...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Santi Tinjacá Rivera‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Mark Baker‭

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Q&A How to start a story after the inciting incident?

My novel starts with the three heroes joining a cattle drive. When they talk among themselves, it's obvious that they have some kind of hidden agenda. We'll learn more about thier secret mission ov...

3 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Shawn V. Wilson‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by DPT‭

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Q&A How to write characters doing illogical things in a believable way?

As much as I would like it, both in Worldbuilding and Writing, not every action is logical or "right". There are two types of this: Imperfect information: The character(s) lack vital informati...

4 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Mephistopheles‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Amadeus‭

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Q&A Letting a (secondary) antagonist leave mid story - Should it be avoided?

I have a powerful antagonist perform important functions within my story. At the midpoint, he just leaves. Several Plot developments depend on this character. I tried replacing him with other char...

4 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by System‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by celtschk‭

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Q&A Non-sense question about plot structures

Suppose then you have an story in your mind. Then, to write down this finite series of events, you have to translate your imagination into the paper. This process isn't trivial, of course and plot ...

3 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by M.N.Raia‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Mark Baker‭

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Q&A Would publishing my story like a TV series be successful? [closed]

I'm considering writing my latest story in the style of a TV series. The plan is to write 13 episodes of 10-12,000 each. Episodes will be published weekly on Kindle over a three month period. If se...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Surtsey‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Amadeus‭

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Q&A I have a name, and no plot [closed]

So I made a name for a character and his name is quite fancy so I have no idea what I should do with him. I named him, ready? Sir Nathaniel Charles III. Without asking for specific suggestions on ...

4 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Cecilia‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Amadeus‭

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Q&A Dumping an entire world for dramatic effect?

About 1/3 of the way through my story the main antagonist "wins" and is able to completely remake the world of the story into his notion of an ideal world. The "new" world shares some elements wit...

6 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Mephistopheles‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Mark Baker‭

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Q&A Idea overflow in plotting?

I've been working on a paranormal/romance/mystery kind of novel for over 4 years now and still haven't finished it. It all started out as a fanfiction but I decided that it had too much potential (...

4 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by AlexSkellington‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Kevin‭

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Q&A How many character flaws can the main character overcome?

My main character is realistically flawed with a few good points. I'm very satisfied with where she is at. As I begin to connect the internal and external conflicts however, it seems that there is ...

3 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by MXMLLN‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Mark Baker‭

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Q&A How to balance the agendas of co protagonists that periodically conflict?

While not mutually exclusive, the goals of my co protagonists do conflict and I need to keep them balanced. MC1 works for the CIA and is being burned. He needs help from someone so he can find out...

4 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Rasdashan‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by Mark Baker‭

Question plot characters
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Q&A Which techniques maintain reader interest when the POV is a spectator? (Sports story as sidequest?)

In my case, my character is literally a spectator. They're at a sporting event. There will be a major event which ramps up their plotline that occurs at this event, but I'm finding the event itself...

3 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Kirk‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A How can I make a non-linear timeline less confusing?

My story is broken into 8 sections. Sections 1 and 2 take place simultaneously, in two different worlds. The other 6 continue in a linear fashion (switching back &amp; forth between the two worlds ...

5 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Evil Sparrow‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Story that's too depressing?

(Warning, mention of sexual abuse!!) In the near future where humans have polluted and radiated the Earth so much that animals and plants have been going extinct at alarming rates and humans thems...

10 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by weakdna says reinstate monica‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Do authors often base their characters off of themselves?

(I previously asked a related question about projecting myself onto my characters.) I've read just few books where authors use their own life experience as the basis for the characters and plot (m...

3 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by weakdna says reinstate monica‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Will it push away a reader if I start my book with the frame story?

So, I'm writing a novel where MC believes he is influenced in some way by an entity he calls Common Sense. He suspects (yet that is weaker than belief) that he is Common Sense's hand in this world,...

2 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by rus9384‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Is it uncompelling to continue the story with lower stakes?

A big piece of criticism I've seen directed at the last season of Game of Thrones was the fact that they killed the Night King before the finale, and the last episodes had Cersei, a mere morta...

4 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by A. Kvåle‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Doubt about the difference between a "Beat" and a "Event"

My main source of research about storytelling/screenwriting/how-to-write-a-book manual is [1]. But, the definition of "beat" given by [1] maybe can causing me some confusion. In [1] we have a def...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by M.N.Raia‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Is it bad writing or bad story telling if first person narrative contains more information than the narrator knows?

Here are a few examples of the narrator knowing more than he should. (A) In a humourous short story about Bertie Wooster and Jeeves, Bertie is talking about a situation involving two strangers and...

2 answers  ·  posted 3y ago by Prem‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A How soon is too soon for a redemption arc?

My character, Day, is the son of a dictator and the director of state-sanctioned and sponsored torture of mutated humans, one of whom is my MC. He killed his own sister to prove to his father that...

3 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by weakdna says reinstate monica‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Does this scene fail the Bechdel test?

My novel has approximately a dozen women in it, but they don’t tend to talk to each other. Most of them are separated geographically or philosophically and sitting down for a chat does not seem som...

3 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by Rasdashan‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A How to derive a storyline from a beginning?

I have an idea for the beginning of a story. I have the setting, the protagonist, and the events that set the story in motion, including the inciting incident and the first plot point. I have, in s...

7 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by System‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Characters that take on a life of their own

There are definite advantages to writing comprehensive character maps, but one downside that I've found is that when a character is fully fleshed out, she/he tries to take on a life of her/his own ...

4 answers  ·  posted 4y ago by robertcday‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A When do I successfully kill off an important secondary main character... in a series of five books?

TL;DR: How much time and development is necessary for a character I intend to kill off and replace with a second character so that both feel important to the narrative? I've looked over this a bit...

4 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by LORI‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A What are the acts of a story?

I'm interested in the elements of how a good story is compiled. When in high school, I was exposed to Shakespeare plays where the stories were divided into different acts. While I was reading thr...

5 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by Sal‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A How does the 3 act structure fit in a Non Linear story?

I see that the 3 Act structure can be applied over almost any story, from Hamlet to Mulholland Drive, from The Matrix to Rocky. Story structures like 3 Acts, or 4-5 Acts, always feature a Character...

1 answer  ·  posted 5y ago by FraEnrico‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A How much of a character's past/background should I let on?

I've been starting something really interesting lately, which is writing each of my main character's back story before writing the main book (If anyone is having the dreaded block or is looking for...

2 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by J. Roberts‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Can you write a story using inanimate characters? [closed]

It seems a simple enough question,

1 answer  ·  posted 5y ago by Surtsey‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot
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Q&A Where does the "black moment" fall in a novel?

I'm currently learning about story structure and there's not much consensus on the "black moment" or "all is lost lull" that happens around Act 2. Is this moment of defeat before or after the secon...

4 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by pbjtoast‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Should a reader have enough information to deduce the twist?

When building a twist into the ending, should I leak enough information such that astute readers could predict the twist if they stopped and mulled it over or should I withhold key elements to guar...

3 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by user2859458‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot
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Q&A Is this an example of an unreliable narrator?

I've been writing a mystery story recently, but I've run into a problem concerning the major plot twist, and was hoping for some guidance from more experienced writers. Here's the scenario: Perso...

2 answers  ·  posted 5y ago by moe‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot
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Q&A How do I handle a backstory big enough to be a story of its own?

I have an idea I'm working on, where there's a huge backstory that I'm not sure how to deal with. In my particular case, the backstory and main story are these: The backstory begins as stereotypi...

6 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Kyle Li‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Where in the writing process do you work in subtext?

In the BBC Sherlock fandom there are many lively discussions about how a lot of the story takes place in subtext: Person C is a "mirror" for Protagonist A, water symbolizes emotions, drinking tea m...

3 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Lauren Ipsum‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A A long backstory right at the beginning

Just as I heard from various sources, a plot has to start with what the reader will find through most of it. And that's what I did, the first scene shown is the main event that triggers the story. ...

3 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Yuuza‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot structure
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Q&A Is it bad storytelling to have things happen by complete chance?

Background I recently noticed in my latest masterpiece novel there is quite a lot of things happening by chance. For example: The main character just happens to pass by an old, frail warrior w...

6 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Daniel Cann‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A How to get the "back again" part after horrible experience?

Ok, so I have a character, Jack, and I don't know how to get him on the "back again" path. You know, when you move past what happened? Get happier? My character has suffered a series of traumatic...

1 answer  ·  posted 6y ago by AmazingMc‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A How do I make sure my audience is aware of subplots?

In a first person story I am writing, I have many subplots going on, but when I started writing it, I realized that the subplots were not obvious. How can I make it more clear that progress is occu...

2 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Uncle Tres‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot style subplot
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Q&A Investing in the 'wrong' character, is it a problem with the story?

Since starting to learn a little about writing I've noticed that I'm more critical when I read things. This has led to a conundrum I've had recently and I'm not sure if it's inevitable or the resu...

2 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Paul7926‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A What are the basic elements of a crime investigation story?

I've been delving a lot into the the crime investigation genre, and at first I thought "Simple, just start of with Who, What, Where, When, Why and How and you've got yourself a story!" but I quickl...

2 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by Kenan Rhoton‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A Plot: is it as central as "fun" or "entertaining"?

So I was writing a story and realized that there was more then enough background material from the characters and actions that these characters went through to write a whole book just on them and t...

1 answer  ·  posted 6y ago by KZD‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

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Q&A 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 seem...

1 answer  ·  posted 6y ago by Thom‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot
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Q&A 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 ...

1 answer  ·  posted 6y ago by abdullahaquarius‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot short-story
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Q&A 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...

1 answer  ·  posted 6y ago by kojow7‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot
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Q&A What makes a plot twist believable/unbelievable?

I'm just interested. Since there were many plot twist in books, movies, etc some critics say they're unbelievable. Now I'm asking myself, what makes a plot twist believable/unbelievable?

2 answers  ·  posted 6y ago by DarkYagami‭  ·  last activity 3y ago by System‭

Question plot realism twist

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