Is there a simple way to make the plot of your story irresistible, so that your readers keep turning pages, desperate to find out what happens next?
Yes. Every irresistible plot contains seven key elements that help catch the reader’s attention and hold it to the very last page.
These keys are so universal that you’ve seen them hundreds of times before, even if you didn’t recognize them. In fact, you’ll actually find these plot keys hidden in the spelling of the word FICTION.
F is for Flaw
In a well-crafted story, something is already wrong even before page one. It could be a dysfunctional relationship, an unhealthy situation, or an unresolved trauma haunting the viewpoint character. Or all three at the same time.
Creating a character who is perfectly fine at the start of the story robs you of opportunities to put your character in deeper and more complex trouble over the coming pages.
But starting the story with a character already suffering a certain amount of misery gives them more room to grow — and helps make your story irresistible.
The best writing podcasts dig deep into the writing process and make you think. That’s why it’s always interesting talking to fellow Colorado author Mark Stevens on the official podcast for the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers.
Not only is Mark an award-winning author in his own right, he also asks the tough questions about what it’s really like to be a working writer. I’ve been lucky enough to be a guest on his podcast several times, and sometimes our talks take a turn that surprises even me.
In this latest episode, we talked about the inspirations behind the cast of the Dru Jasper series. Especially the fan-favorite demon-possessed car, Hellbringer.
We also talked about the difference between plotting a novel and leaving yourself open for inspiration while you write. Believe it or not, you can have it both ways.
By the way, Mark tried to get me to talk about my super-secret brand-new book (a new one that isn’t even out yet), and I couldn’t help but drop a few clues. Plus, we discussed how to handle working on several different books at once.
Oh, and I also got a chance to read the opening scene of my new book, Forever and a Doomsday.
Hey, there’s tons of good stuff in this podcast. Listen to it here.
P.S. Have you signed up for my author newsletter? I love to give away books and other cool stuff. Join here.
Why? Because, hey, Flaming Horse of Doom! That’s why.
If you’ve ever tried to write a book, you’ve probably struggled with plotting.
Plot is more than just what happens in the story. There’s a bigger structure to what happens, and when, and why.
Do it right, and you’ll create a gripping story. But do it wrong, and your story will get nothing but yawns.
Want to know the secret to writing irresistible plots?
Categories: For Writers, how to write a book, how to write a novel
Tags: Fiction University, Flaw, how to write a book, how to write a novel, Inciting Incident, Janice Hardy, plotting tips, writing conferences, Writing Tips