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Thursday, 27 October 2011

STIRRING THE PLOT


First of all, in order to stir the plot you have to know what a plot is. Very simply put, the plot is the idea that brews in your head and steams out your ears and onto your fingertips. It’s the very beginning idea that comes to you out of the blue and lands on your plate. Now to get a bit more technical on the subject.

WHERE DOES THE PLOT COME FROM?
Like I said it comes from out of your head. So I will begin with a plot line of my own that hasn’t been developed yet into a story. Of course the idea will first begin with some action or character’s action. So let’s go.

IDEA
Scene: Woman is walking in deep fog on a street corner. Under the street-corner light in the hazy fog she sees a man. He is dressed in a Burberry and hat and she catches her breath when she realizes how much he resembles a character in her latest novel, the novel she has just finished but has yet to be released.

CHARACTERS
Now we stir in the characters and the dilemma. Main character (woman) is a novelist. Character 2 is the man. Character 3 will be the novelist fiancé. Character 4 is the novelist’s psychiatrist.
These are four leading characters, there could be more sprinkled throughout.

CONFLICT
Okay now we stir in the conflict. Our novelist character is out of her head with astonishment, fright, disbelief. This can’t be. But he amazingly resembles a character from her book. She rushes home to the safety and sanity of her lover’s arms.  In this instance the conflict is character versus self. Our novelist character believes she is going crazy. Not from this first event but from the second one, and the third, and so on where she keeps seeing the male character from her book show up everywhere she goes.

She confides in her fiancé who advises her to see a psychiatrist. This only complicates matters worse when the psychiatrist hypnotizes her and takes her back to actions and events that she had forgotten or hidden away in her mind. Relying heavily on her fiancé’s support she manages to get through the days. However when she has an encounter with her book character on an elevator and he speaks to her, she is convinced he is real and not a character. But when he tells her he is the character and that she has made him real, she freaks.

She decides to write an epilogue to her book and kill off the character. Maybe that would make him go away. All along her fiancé is thinking she has severe mental problems maybe from being a writer and writing such weird stuff that she does. He encourages the psychiatrist help and she continues to see the psychiatrist.

After writing the epilogue some strange things begin to happen and the surprise ending brings everything to a close…that is until the sequel, which I have already started to stir the plot for, begins.

Conclusion to this post: This all began with a vision of the woman and the foggy night and the man by the lamppost. How do you develop plots? Where do your ideas come from? Do you sit and make a circle and write words in it? Or maybe just write down a few different ideas and either try and mesh them or go with a single one if it sounds interesting?

Maybe you just start off cold turkey (I like to do this once in awhile, as it’s fun to see where it goes) by what I like to call space writing. Just write, maybe begin with a sentence, like She had no idea that the man sitting in front of her was her brother and when he told her so, she fainted. Now that line could lead to all kinds of what ifs. So stir that plot, add the main ingredients, stir some more, throw in some opposing spices, and let’s get boiling. Happy Writing and Reading everyone!

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