Saturday, April 14, 2012

Saturday and the Tale of the Twisted Times

Or: That is one of the worst titles I've ever come up with; also, plot and such.

I've probably blogged about this before, but I can't remember if I have so hopefully you guys can't either.

Here's something you may or may not know about me: I am not good at plot.

Wait, hold on. Bacon.

Okay, I'm back. Also, yum. Anyways, I'm not good at plot. I'm better at the mushy-gushy emotional stuff. And there's nothing wrong with a purely character or emotion-driven plot, obviously, but the books I write need the other kind, too.

Basically, people be dying a lot in my books.

I have a few tips for stronger plots, too.

1. Either before or after the rough draft, depending on which one will make you less crazy, an outline is a great idea. Sometimes an outline before I draft helps me write stronger initially, sometimes I need to just pants things. Either way, rough draft outlining.

2. Update the rough outline. Whenever you change a plot event, update your outline. Otherwise, what good will it do for you, right?

3. Motivation. If your books are anything like mine, someone is trying to kill someone else. This is kind of a Big Deal. Most people don't just decide to murder someone. You really, really need to think about why the character thinks that this is their only option left. What happened that they think they can live with the death of a person on their hands?

4. Cut scenes that are not important to the plot or character development. Sometimes, you will write awesome incredible scenes that you love dearly. Sometimes you will have to cut these same scenes. Not always, but sometimes some scenes are just filler and you don't need them.

5. Make someone else do it. Okay, this isn't REALLY a tip, but honestly, my crit partners have given me AWESOME advice about plot and I couldn't do this whole writing thing without them.

Since this honestly isn't my best area, you guys tell me now! What are your best tips for writing strong plots?

Peace and cookies,