The plot of a story. How to become a writer.
How to become a writer – Is your plot working?
A lot of stories fail simply because the writer hasn’t controlled the ingredients. There are certain elements that a plot must contain in order for it to be successful. Success is never guaranteed, but you can at least give your manuscript a fighting chance by following these guidelines.
The plot of a story – What makes a plot successful?
People sometimes email my blog about how to become a writer. Most wannabes are searching for story writing tips, and in this competitive world who can blame them. They all dream of success and want to know how to become a writer, most think they have unique problems, yet the same old issues crop up time after time. Amongst these issues seems to be a quandary with PLOT and just what to do with it to make their story successful.
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The plot of a story – Finding that elusive quality
Success! Wow, success is an elusive quality. What is success after all? Is it making loads of money from your story, is it becoming famous, or is it simply getting peer recognition? My idea of success might be your idea of failure; it’s all quite relative.
If someone bottles a universal formula for success, they will become very wealthy. However, where writing is concerned, there are certain points that whilst not guaranteeing success, should not be ignored. The plot of a story certainly HAS to have a firm foundation, and part of that is getting the ingredients right.
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The plot of a story – Be believable
Your readers must believe in you and what you write. If they don’t believe, they’ll quickly dump your book. However, before THEY believe, YOU must believe. So the first thing is to truly believe in what you’re writing. If you write with tongue in cheek, you’ll never succeed. Only write about topics that you have empathy with. If you think romance is naff, then why try to to write it? Write about what you know. Write about what you love….
The plot of your story MUST be believable in context with the genre. Notice what I said – in context with the genre. If you’re writing sci-fi it will obviously not be a real, but it has to seem believable. You have to convince your readers it CAN happen.
In spite of what some people think, your story doesn’t have to be true to life. If your story only contains a hotchpotch collection of events from your life, unless you’re a very extraordinary person, it will probably be quite boring. A story needs to be different to real life – perhaps more how people would LIKE their life to be – and it should be emotive. Never forget the importance of an emotive influence on your readers. If your reader feels no emotional attachment, they won’t continue to read.
Your plot should ALWAYS follow the rule of cause and effect. The plot should never be anything other than absolutely logical. There must be a good reason for things to happen – and conversely if things have happened, there should always be consequences that fit the event.
The plot of a story – Elements
In order for your plot of a story to succeed it MUST contain
Action doesn’t have to be violent- action means something of interest HAPPENING – something taking place that continually moves the story forward.
Likewise, suspense doesn’t necessarily mean thrilling, it means something to keep the reader turning the pages – waiting to see the result
The plot of a story – Research
The elements of your plot of a story must be compatible and in balance. Your plot won’t succeed if any of these elements are missing or if they are not compatible.
Your plot should always be based on what you know. If you don’t know then find out BEFORE you put pen to paper. Get your boots on, get your texts books out, and dig the information out! RESEARCH your book!
After all these years of published novels and reams of short stories, there’s little likelihood of you finding a new plot. You simply have to discover news ways of dealing with an old plot.
Just follow these simple guidelines and you’ll at least have an idea of what to do. If you really do want to be a writer, don’t give up – and don’t expect anyone else to do your work for you. Get the old thinking cap on and work on that plot
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The Plot of a Story – End of – The Plot of a Story