Plotting your novel – definitive guide to success

A good story is made up of a beginning, middle and an end. It begins with a good hook, interesting characters, conflict, sub plots, and climax.

The plot describes the events that make up a story. Think of your plot as being pliable, movable in every way. The plot of your story can be morphed into any intigue of your choosing. A strong plot holds steady.

A weak plot crumbles.

Understanding what plots are and how they can strengthen your storytelling is a big part of writing.

A good plot comes from two things: imagination and organization.

How to plot a book

There are 3 critical actions in plotting a book

  • Rising action: incidents in your story that build excitement or suspense.
  • Climax: the most intense point of tension or action.
  • Falling action: occurs right after the climax, when your book’s main problem is resolved.

Outlining a book

An outline is a visual representation of the structure of your story. Examples of an outine:

 

1. The simple method:

Easy, to the point, and ready for you to begin your  story.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

2. A more complex, detailed outline:

organized by scene, characters, and so on…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

The mind mapping method:

A more creative plotting option for visual learners.

 


How to tell a successful story using the five C’s:

The five C’s are the writers’ compass.

Characters – Who are the main characters and/or the supporting characters? Consider the point of view your story being told. Is there anything unique or notable about your characters that the reader needs to know.

Conflict – Develop the main problem. What issues does you protagonist and your supporting characters try to overcome or face? Conflict drives your story and keeps readers flipping the pages, making this is a crucial part of your plot.

Catalyst – What are the characters’ goals and what motivated them in your story? How does it tie into your conflict.

Context – When (what time period) and where does your story take place? Does your story change locations?

Conclusion – Your characters experiencing resolution. Occurring at the end of your story and  bringing everything to a close. Be sure that your conclusion resolves every problem your characters faced. Do not leave any loose ends to your story.