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It’s the end of this super-duper sparkly month on plotting and I wanted to give you some resources to help you kick more plotting butt. So below are some books and methods that should totally help strengthen your plots for your book.
My Writers Vault
First off if you’re not a part of the writing vault tribe here you should be because I have a ton of awesome free stuffs. From a workbook that teaches how to find a story that will spark with you and ignite your excitement so you write it > to > mindmaps for idea creation and a cheat sheet that will help you create better plot twists.
In all, you’ll probably find something in here that will help you. If you enter your name and email address the password for the Writers Resource will come straight to your inbox.
Boom. Like magic.
Save the Cat
The title is wacky until you read the book, and once you do it will change you in ways you can’t even imagine. You won’t even be able to watch a television show without trying to analyze every part of it any more. You’ll intricately understand story line in a way you cannot yet fathom
This book is actually for screen writers but the advice also applies to books, hell it absolutely applies to books. It breaks down plot in a way that makes story lines so easy to write, that helps you connect your readers to the story, to the characters, to the world. It’s a masterpiece of freaking mind blowing knowledge…there I said it.
Plot and Structure
If you want to start with the basics of plot, what it is and how to master it, this book will teach you. Not only that but there’s some neat checklist inside too so you can actually think about what you’re learning, and put it into action. Yeah I know as well as you do that you can read a dozen non-fiction books and only absorb 10% of each. So checklists are friends.
Bell writes some great books on writing in general and his plot and structure book is pretty awesome-sauce.
Once you understand plot and structure from Bell, and building tension with beats from Snyder, Munier’s use of lists, checklists and advice will help you to expertly weave theme and character into an epic plot. She teaches you why theme is so important and drives a pretty damn compelling argument….then she shows you how to get your theme/plot right. Munier is an agent and author and pretty big deal in the writing world, so you knows her shizz.
Seriously, these books are freaking awesome, and if you’re new to non-fiction and usually find yourself with your nose stuck in a fiction book, get ready to have your mind read, picked apart and then blown to pieces.
If you haven’t heard of this method yet, you may be living under a rock haha no seriously, it does really work. You come up with ideas about your story from a bunch of different angles, that’s what this method is.
Randy likens it to a snowflake, but I’d liken it to angles, because I think weirdly I guess. It’s like this: If you can look at things from several different directions, you tend to understand it more. Building your plot that way breaths life into it. Randy talks you through his methods here. I even once tried his software and it worked out pretty great too. But he likens it to a snowflake, because I guess it’s prettier than a decagon.
If you’re looking for a software that will track scenes, and make big corkboard post it not type plots for you, scrivener does it. I use it to outline and then write novels. Using a big corkboard post-it note thing I write out my quick plot outline notes. Then I can write the scenes within it. Easy peasy. And you can find things way faster than if you use word, or google docs.
Play Along Spot the Plot Point
In my writers vault is a rough mock up, a checklist of sorts, for you to sit down and play along with your favorite movies and television shows. The idea is to spot the plot points, and the foreshadowing.
This website SavetheCat.com has already done that for you with a list of probably hundreds of movies and shows chunked up into critical plot points. If you read enough of them you’re going to really start to see patterns, and understand plot quickly.
Finally a list of articles on plotting from this site! Happy browsing.
What resources and programmes do you use to plot? Let me know in the comments below