Tag Archives: writing novels

Micro Conflicts: Moving Scenes Forward

Conflict is an essential element of narrative. Just about anyone will recognize larger conflicts, even the seven basic conflicts, as plot, but some of the best conflict occurs in small scale. Keeping interest can equate to maintaining some kind of conflict tension from scene to scene and chapter to chapter. If the story keeps all the satisfaction and resolution until the end, most readers will lose interest or start to chaff against constantly being strung along. Of course, this is

Project Distraction: Shiny Object Syndrome and Plot Bunnies

Writers, like all creative people, hope to never run short of ideas. Unfortunately, focus problems plus an abundance of ideas add up to distraction. There are several terms for this, including but not limited to the more popular two: Shiny Object Syndrome and Plot Bunnies. When these distractions arrive, two lines of action are possible. You can abandon the current project to begin the attractive new idea with all your effort, or you can continue your current project and shelf

Harness the Power of the Subplot

Subplots seem to be a bit of a dirty word in a world that now views itself in terms of under-represented categories. While the prefix “sub” technically sets these story lines below the main plot of the story, subplots are actually powerful fixtures in any extended story. The purpose of subplots as a storytelling device (in both written and performance storytelling) is rooted in the psychology of the listener. A great story, like life, is rarely a straight line from cause

Breaking the Script

People go through much of their lives on autopilot, and the programming for everyday life is in social scripts. These ever-present outlines for action are present in story too, though they make up the unwritten world between the lines of the narrative. These expected, and often overlooked, patterns of behavior enlighten creative work when this tool is explored and used to experiment. Consider the scripts observed by social scientists as the strongest weapon of subtle tone control. Definition/Theory Social scripts