Plotting Your Novel

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What is a plot and how do you come up with one that will have your readers glued to every last word on the page? Unless you're aiming for a story with little to no development, you're going to have to develop a plot

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What is a plot and how do you come up with one that will have your readers glued to every last word on the page? Unless you're aiming for a story with little to no development, you're going to have to develop a plot. The plot of your story is an essential part of writing any novel, let alone a chicklit novel. The basic formula to a plot is to have a clear beginning, middle and ending. As easy this sounds, putting this formula into practice can take up a lot more work than most writers realise.

Starting with a brief description of our basic formula, we'll expand on these different steps to help you develop your plot to achieve that perfectly structured novel!


PLOT = BEGINNING + MIDDLE + ENDING:

THE BEGINNING:

The beginning of your story is sometimes easy and sometimes difficult, depending on the type of writer you are. If you're the type of writer who plans a story by beginning at its ending and working your way backwards to the start, you'll usually start with the major point of the story, the one that your entire plot revolves around. If you're a writer who starts from the beginning then you'll most likely start it from the first introduction or first chapter. Both methods work, and deciding which method you prefer is key.

When you read a novel, have you ever been gripped by the first sentence? Have you thought that the first few paragraphs were so well-written that you couldn't put the story down? The beginning of your story is the most crucial one. Regardless if you start planning and writing your story at the end, it won't matter, because a reader almost always starts a story at the beginning. The beginning of your story dictates how the rest of your story will play out. Keep in mind the tone and voice that you use in the beginning of the story, because this must be kept consistent right to the end of your book (even multiple protagonists will use the same tone and voice distint to their character).

The whole point of a beginning is to introduce readers to the main character, and give a brief outlook of her life and how her life is about to change. So, to break down the beginning even more, make sure that you keep in mind the following:

1. Start with the status quo: Introduce us briefly to the character's general life and habits.

Example: It's Saturday and Marie's spending it yet again at the book store. While her friends have exciting lives like protesting at a women's march, or going on holidays to wild and exotic places with their even wilder and exotic looking partners, Marie is stuck behind the counter in the stuffy air of the book store.

2. An event occurs: This is the part where we introduce a destructive or new unforeseen or foreseen act to the story.

Example: Just as Marie's about to call it quits and close up early, the door to the book store opens. She straightens up at the sight of the frantic looking man, stunned into silence when he hurries up to her. Without warning, the man thrusts a pointed finger at Marie.

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