Category Archives: Plotting

An Assortment of Plotting Tips for You (Part Three)

Some more goodies for you–three more excerpts from the series of live trainings I did in October about plotting methods for both plotters and pantsers (From Premise to Plot: Easy Story Structure for Plotters and Pantsers).

Romance brainstorming questions, illustrated with a romance story’s inciting incident:

Weaving multiple inciting incidents together in a multi-plotline story:

How to turn plot events into specific scenes that move your story forward:

Of course, we covered so much more in From Premise to Plot, which ended up generating more than 9 hours of video training!

If you missed it and would like to learn more about the replays (and how you can get them), go here: http://jvz1.com/c/257231/184347

An Assortment of Plotting Tips for You (Part Two)

Yesterday, I shared some excerpts from a series of live trainings I did in October about plotting methods for both plotters and pantsers (From Premise to Plot: Easy Story Structure for Plotters and Pantsers).

The result was more than 9 hours of video, covering an array of plotting techniques for all types of writers, both organic writers (pantsers) and outliners who love traditional story structure (plotters).

Here are some more excerpts from this training with you.

A couple of the “rules of thumb” for escalating conflict in fiction (applies to both outliners and intuitive writers, but each of you will use them a little differently):

How understanding power shifts in traditional plot structure can help organic or intuitive writers:

Why romance fiction is so tricky to do well:

Of course, we covered so much more in From Premise to Plot!

If you missed it and would like to learn more about the replays (and how you can get them), go here:  http://jvz1.com/c/257231/184347

An Assortment of Plotting Tips for You (Part One)

In October, I taught a series of live trainings on plotting methods for both plotters and pantsers (From Premise to Plot: Easy Story Structure for Plotters and Pantsers).

It was a ton of fun, and so many of you who attended asked great questions that spurred me to add extra content beyond what I’d planned.

The result was more than 9 hours of video, covering an array of plotting techniques for all types of writers, both organic writers (pantsers) and outliners who love traditional story structure (plotters).

I’d like to share some excerpts from this training with you.

Functional definitions of “plot” and “plot point” (it’s not the same ones you learned in your high school English class):

Brainstorming questions for plotting, using the first pinch point as an example:

Plotters vs. pantsers – why you shouldn’t think of it as a “versus”:

Of course, we covered so much more in From Premise to Plot!

If you missed it and would like to learn more about the replays (and how you can get them), go here:  http://jvz1.com/c/257231/184347

Why Do Writers Get Stuck Even When Writing With An Outline?

A quick tips video for you today — two reasons why you might get stuck in the middle of your first draft, even if you’re writing with a detailed plot outline.

 

P.S. I’ve been working on a secret project for a couple of weeks now, and it’s almost time to pull back the curtain!  More news coming soon…

How to Create Powerful Internal Conflicts for Your Characters

I’m blogging at Savvy Authors today about how to construct internal conflicts so that they generate plot ideas and help you make the theme of your story stronger.

If you can complete the Internal Conflict Sentence, you’ll find out if your character’s internal conflict works (and it’ll be obvious how to fix it if it doesn’t work).  If you struggle to writing stories where the character’s inner struggles drive the external plot, this is where you start.

Read all about it at:

http://savvyauthors.com/blog/index.php/the-internal-conflict-formula-that-generates-plot-points-and-strengthens-theme-by-lynn-johnston/

Hope to see you there!

The 8 Steps of the Character Growth Arc

For easy reference, here are the eight steps of the character growth arc (from my workshop, Dynamic Characterization: A No-Inspiration Required System for Creating Unforgettable Characters).

character arc tip graphic-300 wide 100 dpi

Editing for Romance Writers: How to Map Out the Relationship Arc

I’m guest-blogging today at Fiction Blueprints about editing for romance writers, demonstrating a technique for mapping out the relationship arc:

http://tinyurl.com/mtp5ul2

This is a quick-and-dirty way to figure out if there’s enough variation in your character’s relationship as it develops and to identify sections of story where it feels like the arc isn’t progressing.

Hint:  you don’t have to wait for edits to do this, either. You can use it on your plot outline to test the romance arc before you write the story.

See you there!

Editing for Story, Episode 1: Plot Structure

In honor of those who’ve finished NaNoWriMo and will be editing their new baby later this month or next year, we’ll be talking about the editing process for fiction.

Today’s video: tips for editing, why plot structure is important, and how to analyze the plot structure of your story.

Also, don’t forget to download your free copy of Editing for Story: http://tinyurl.com/kws5c5w

The 30 Day Novel: NaNoWriMo Series, Day 30

Welcome to Day 30, the final day of NaNoWriMo!

Today we’re talking about your story’s resolution and how to tie up all those loose story ends, as well as the emotion that you’ll end your story on.

Thanks for stopping by! Come by tomorrow–we’ll talk about what to do next and how to get started on editing your novel.

The 30 Day Novel: NaNoWriMo Series, Day 29

Welcome to Day 29 of NaNoWriMo!

Today we’re talking about the defeat or victory of the protagonist during the climax of your novel and how to make it pay off in the biggest way possible, as well as handling endings in a book that’s part of a series.

Thanks for stopping by–come back tomorrow for Day 30 tips!