Daily Archives: August 3, 2012

Reading Circles – Plot & Structure

Hi everyone! I’m sorry this Reading Circles post is a little late! I’m telling myself it’s still technically Friday in the States, even as I write this in my PJs in the wee hours of Saturday morning before everyone else wakes. I was stuck in Bangkok with less than 10 minutes’ worth of internet access this week as I went to pick up my mother and father, who are now visiting. But I’m back home now and scrambling a little to catch up!

So, last week, I shared with you a plot device I use called the Snowflake Method. I’ve found it very helpful in setting up the outline of any larger piece of work and getting me through writing it, scene by scene. However, there is more to a well-tooled plot than setting out a series of conflicts and trucking your way through them. There are high points and low points, areas to ramp up tension, necessary points of revelation, and of course, the denouement. How do you know when and where to put all that?

Or what if you have the core of a story idea, but you’re not sure how to flush it out?

What if you’ve gone along just fine, and then suddenly hit a dead end? Or your story just petered out? How do you fix that?

Our next read will help answer these kinds of questions. We’ll learn about plot structures and the necessary elements to make a book a page turner. Next week, we’ll start reading another of the Write Great Fiction Series: Plot and Structure, by James Scott Bell.

This book has made a world of difference for me in structuring my writing. I hope you’ll find it just as helpful to you too!