On Creating Story When You Only Have the Plot

By Cat Rambo

I’m finishing up the year by trying to wrap up writing the on-demand version of my Moving from Idea to Draft class. This is a tough translation, because the live class depends heavily on what the students have brought: I try to help them go deeper into the idea each has brought to class and show them ways of fleshing it out.

For the on-demand version, what I’m doing is looking at each of the various ways I’ve seen stories develop and doing a section on each, looking at what it is, what it gives you to help with fleshing out the story, possible trouble spots, some ways to proceed with it, and then two or three exercises to refine skills with that, each with a basic and then an overachiever version, a model I used with the Description and Delivering Information class. There’s twenty-three sections altogether, but here’s the section on starting with a plot, minus the exercises.

What It Is:

Some stories begin with a plot. This is a complete story: you know the problem, some basics of the characters and what will happen. Perhaps it’s something you’ve generated or taken from elsewhere. Perhaps it arrives pre-made in your head (and you should glory in it when it does, in my opinion), so all you need to do is sit down at the keyboard and write it out.

Read the full article at Cat’s Website.

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