A combined mission this week: to gather ideas for Daoud’s book and to work out how to plot both books. In my hunt for ways to structure a book (part of MA homework!), I found this cracking video explaining how to use storyboards to organise plot.
I also thought it may be useful to add the approaches I’ve found and thought to come at all the stories you might want to tell in your fiction or creative nonfiction.
If you think of any more, please let me know.
Approaches to novel structure
Think of the “shape” of your book as a simple diamond. The question that your book answers is at the top point; the support for the answer is in the wide part in the middle; and the answer is the bottom point.
Think of each chapter in the same way–and then, each subchapter.
Start with the question. Add the questions that need to be answered to answer the bigger question. Then conclude with the answer. Do this at each level.
From A – Z
As a collections of unconnected essays
Gustav Freytag considered plot a narrative structure that__ divided a story into five parts__, like the five acts of a play. These parts are: exposition (of the situation); rising action (through conflict); climax (or turning point); falling action; and resolution.
Using a three-act, five part ‘W’ storyboard http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMhLvMJ_r0Y&feature=share
Foster-Harris, said that plot is the working-out of an emotional problem caused by two conflicting emotions being felt by the same person (the main character. The basic elements of plot (Story) can be understood quite simply as Character, Conflict, Complication, Crisis-Climax, and Resolution. Change is an important element but it is inherent the actions proper.
Following a real-world structure (birthday to birthday, event to event, the running of an event/sports/theatre season, seasons of the year,
A pincer movement as past and future events move to converge at the climax.
Each chapter ends on a question that needs to be answered in the next chapter.
Circle: opening and closing a chapter with the same event and fill the middle of the chapter with emotional development from a range of experiences/thoughts.
A discussion between two periods of time/characters about a theme
The ‘fairytale format cited by Jurgen Wolff http://www.insaf.pk/Portals/0/NTForums_Attach/Your%20Writing%20Coach.pdf go to pdf p 104, and actual page 95
Approaches to writing/planning Lessons on structure/plotting http://www.youtube.com/user/architectus777#g/c/92B3E146AB7D132F Sign method: http://www.joeltrainsauthors.com/books-beat-brochures-for-finding-new-clients-joel-orr-friday-december-19-2008-as-a-business-coach-i-have-explored-the-process-of-finding-new-coaching-clients-extensively-i-think-what-ive-lea/ Closet-cleaning approach http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C2seU4vTs9g The Snowflake Method http://www.advancedfictionwriting.com/art/snowflake.php Plot blog http://plotwhisperer.blogspot.com/2009/07/plot-as-verb.html Table of contents http://hiwrite.com/outline.html
I woke up this morning with the image in my head of the cover of a book I read when I was a teenager: The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier.
(title courtesy of my Grandad Mawdsley, used whenever he didn’t like the direction of conversation, or simply couldn’t hear it!)
Would you believe it? Forty years’ worth of fledglings have delighted in the highs and delights of Jim Henson’s colourful, exciting characters teaching something that had previously been mind-numbingly boring and remarkably repetitive.
Wasn’t it easy at school? You wrote a first draft, your teacher corrected it and told you how to make it better and that was that — you got a good grade, (or you didn’t!) but ultimately it didn’t really matter … not in the great scheme of things.