Create A Plot Outline In 8 Easy Steps By Glen C. Strathy How would you like to create a plot outline for your novel in less than an hour that is emotionally compelling and dramatically sound? It's easier than you think. The secret is to incorporate the 8 Basic Plot Elements. Starting with your story idea, you only need to make eight choices to ensure the plot of your future novel hangs together in a meaningful way. Sound intriguing? I'll describe each of the eight elements in turn. On the other hand, if you already have a draft for a novel, that you're looking to revise, then ask yourself, as we go through these elements, whether you have included them in your story. 1. 15K+Save The first element to include in your plot outline is the Story Goal, which we covered in detail in the previous article, The Key to a Solid Plot: Choosing a Story Goal. There are many ways we could involve other characters in this goal. ... a mother who wants her to be happier. ... a jealous ex-boyfriend who tries to sabotage her love life. 2. 3. 4. 6.
The Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations The Thirty-Six Dramatic Situations is a descriptive list which was created by Georges Polti to categorize every dramatic situation that might occur in a story or performance. To do this Polti analyzed classical Greek texts, plus classical and contemporaneous French works. He also analyzed a handful of non-French authors. In his introduction, Polti claims to be continuing the work of Carlo Gozzi, who also identified 36 situations. Publication history “Gozzi maintained that there can be but thirty-six tragic situations. This list was published in a book of the same name, which contains extended explanations and examples. The list is popularized as an aid for writers, but it is also used by dramatists, storytellers and many others. The 36 situations Each situation is stated, then followed by the necessary elements for each situation and a brief description. See also References External links
Worksheets for Writers The writing community is fortunate to have many great resources. Based on things I learned from phenomenal teachers like Larry Brooks, Michael Hauge, and Martha Alderson, I developed these worksheets* to help all writers, from plotters to pantsers (those who write by the seat of their pants). Let me know at my Contact page if there are other worksheets you’d like me to create. Sign up for my newsletter to receive my blog posts and hear about all additions I make to this page. * With the exception of the Save the Cat Beat Sheet, which was developed by Elizabeth Davis. New to Beat Sheets? Note: I love sharing these worksheets, but if you give others the direct links to the files, the links won’t work. (Click each image to view larger version.) Save the Cat Beat Sheet: This spreadsheet is based on Blake Snyder’s Save the Cat writing craft book. Save the Cat Beat Sheet Spreadsheet for Novels by Elizabeth Davis. Story Engineering Story Structure Beat Sheet: Jami Gold’s Basic Beat Sheet:
Creative Writing 101 RJ Great article. Morning is definitely the time where I am most creative. I think it’s because my mind is the freshest and the least cluttered at this time of day. Doug Rosbury When I write, it is with an emphasis on the sharing of wisdom arising from my life experience. Wether one could reasonably term such writing as being creative or not I don’t necessarily concern myself with. The creative aspect which I believe is part of a writing nevertheless may be found in how I address people with careful consideration regarding how I may come across to them.
Random Story Generator This thing is so fun. Prepare yourself! The idea I had was to create a sentence that sounded like a brief plot outline or even a TV Guide blurb for a Christian speculative novel. I wanted to create several variables that would be randomly supplied by a little software utility, thus supplying a plot outline that might just be crazy enough to give you an idea spark. So I conscripted my Christian speculative novelist buddy, Randall Ingermanson, to do the coding. Thanks, Randy! The paragraph you see below in blue is what the software generated for you just now. Have fun! Note that if nothing happens, you may have to click to allow ActiveX content to be shown on the page. This is a werewolf story about a pretender who wants to return to his/her home but is prevented from doing so by an earthquake bent on beating the devil at his own game. Tell me another story!
10 Questions to Ask When You Create a Fictional Culture | Alyssa Hollingsworth The way I build worlds is by collecting cool stuff from the history, myth and people around me. I blend these details with my own imagination, and create my own cultures. Culture is a vital part to realistic worldbuilding. Normally there are a few particular cultures that interest me at a given time. I read whatever I can find about them, their environment, their traditions and their myths. In the long term, there is nothing more inspiring and challenging than visiting foreign cultures yourself (especially if you can get far beyond your comfort zone to do it). But reading (non-fiction, myth/legend/fairytales, as well as the classics like Dune and Lord of the Rings) and watching documentaries/films can get you a long way toward filling up on your inspiration tank. It’s important to remember: Culture in fiction isn’t a rod to get a point across. What is the most important ideal to this culture as a whole? Like this: Like Loading...
10 Journal Keeping Ideas that Will Enhance Your Life What should I write about? Will it sound dumb? Will I run out of ideas before I even get started? Keeping a journal can be a rewarding experience, but lots of people don’t know where to begin. Perhaps the best way is to decide what kind of journaling you want to do, though this isn’t always easy. My personal favorites are reflection and goal journals, but everyone has a different favorite. And that’s okay! 1. There was a green robot. Dream journals are a lot of fun. 2. A “record-keeping” journal is nothing but the facts. 3. Gratitude journals are extremely rewarding. 4. Online journaling, or blogging, has gained popularity in recent years. 5. If words aren’t your thing, consider a collage or art journal. 6. Are you the brilliant thinker? 7. Scholars regularly publish in academic journals, but what about keeping your own personal academic journal? 8. A gift journal is unlike every other journal because *gasp* it’s not meant for you. 9. 10. Do you keep a journal?
Beginners' four faults | Writing As an editor, I know when I am reading someone's first novel. I have nicknames for the four give-away faults beginners make: (1) Walk and Chew Gum (2) Furry Dice (3) Tea, Vicar? (4) Styrofoam. I see at least one of these in every manuscript where the author has not mastered the craft of writing before submitting in his or her work. What are these four faults and, more importantly, how can you cure them? (1) Walk and Chew GumThe writer has not integrated action and dialogue, internal monologue and action, or internal monologue with dialogue. "If you think you're going to town you'd better thing again," said Ralph. Not integrating action and dialogue makes for jerky, lifeless prose. "If you think you're going to town you'd better think again," Ralph snapped, putting down his can of beer. This might not be award-winning prose, but it reflects the reality of the action and feelings better by having action, thought and dialogue knitted together. She snatched the gun and aimed. (3) Tea, Vicar?
Get Me Writing » 5 Fool-Proof Ways to Put your Muse to Work EmailEmail Are you at the mercy of your Muse? Do you wake at night drenched in sweat, the icy fingers of a nightmare still clinging to your heart? A nightmare where you’re alone in a cold desert, digging in the dirt for just one idea (and you have no pants on)? Fear not, the Muse can be tamed! But first, as we’ll be speaking about inspiration, the inspiration for this post comes from an episode of The Creative Penn. Once upon a time, I was one of those awful teenager things, and wasted my time even more than I do now. By the time I decided to take writing more seriously (many years later), that fickle fairy had up and left, returning only very occasionally. It might be that the teenage mind has better access to the Muse phone line (for some reason I’m imagining a purple version of the Batphone in Commissioner Gordon’s office); it might be that my head had more space, more freedom to create (more on that later). "You're right, Chief O'Hara. For a Start, Write Stuff Down A good run.
21 Writing Prompts for Setting a Scene in Your Novel When you’re writing (or rewriting) a scene, do you ever get the feeling you just don’t have enough to say? Sure, there’s the action–but what about all the extra bits meant to flesh out your story? While I don’t encourage overwriting for the sake of word count, meaningful details can help you establish setting and atmosphere. Last week, I sat down with John Banville’s Booker Prize winning novel, The Sea–a book that features prose I admire–and took careful notes about how the author managed to effectively set certain scenes. Here’s just one of its many beautiful passages : I would not swim again, after that day. From this passage, I know the narrator is remembering something unpleasant from his past, and the imagery foreshadows what happens later in the story. Based on my reading, the following are 21 writing prompts for creating depth in your prose: Where does the scene take place? What other prompts can you share to help us set the scene?
Journaling your Past ©2005 - 2007 by aisling d'art I'm probably best-known for my personal journaling workshops and online art journals. And, I want to share some of my journaling tips with you in this free ebook about journaling your own history. Journaling Your Past is a free 26-page ebook, and it's like taking one of my popular workshops at home. You'll learn how to create a rich and rewarding journal of your personal and family history easily, in just 15 minutes a day. Whether you'd like to record your life story for future generations, or introduce your family to the fascinating study of genealogy and family history, this is a great way to start. This workbook includes class notes, reproduceable worksheets, and tips on how to teach this class yourself. It's also ideal for homeschoolers, Scouts or church groups, or for family evenings at home. This ebook is a PDF that you can read with the free Adobe Acrobat Reader program. YOU ARE HERE: home > journals > free 'journaling your past' ebook
Inspiration for Writers, Inc.: Writing Tips- Advice for Beginners Advice for Beginners So you wanna be a writer when you grow up, huh? Don't become a writer. Not for money. Not for glory. With that out of the way, I assume you have passion. Read everything you can get your hands on. Observe. Look at your surroundings as though you're showing them to someone who's never been to your area. Write every day. Live. Experience as many aspects of life as you can. This isn't to say you must become an alcoholic to understand alcoholism (although it does help) or a bank robber to understand a thief. What kind of job should you hold while waiting to publish? Some suggestions: Work with people from diverse backgrounds, such as those you can meet in airports, resorts, hotels and restaurants. There are two aspects to writing—the craft and the art. And nobody can take that away from you. All rights reserved.