Tag: structure

  • Scenes: The Skeleton of a Novel

    You’re a human being: you can stand up, sit down, or do a somersault. That’s because you have a skeleton that gives your soft tissue a structure. Likewise, it’s important to give your novel a structure that will hold all the soft murmurings about characters, places and events. It begins with understanding the structure of […]

  • End of Act I: 5 Functions Determine Plot

    In traditional jargon, Act 1 ends with a plot point that pushes the protagonist irretrievably into committing to the action of the story. The problem with writing is that the Plot Point at the end of Act 1 could be anything. At least at the beginning of the writing process. In reality, that plot point […]

  • 3-Act Structure: Solving a Top-Heavy Problem

    Using the 3-Act Structure: Adjusting Expectations Most writers use a 3-act structure and for good reason. It works. Act 1: 25% of the length, sets up the story conflict and ends when the main character (MC) commits to doing something about the conflict. Act 2: 50% of the length, develops and deepens the conflict and […]

  • 10 Checkpoints for Scenes

    Does your Scene Pass this Checklist? Where/When. (Setting) Did you orient the reader at the beginning of the scene? Does the reader know where this takes place: room in house, city, state, country, etc? Does the reader know when this takes place: time of day, season of year, place within chronology of story? If the […]

  • revision difficulties

    Issues I Must Deal With in This Novel Revision How’s your novel revision going, Darcy? Big v. little issues. I work for a while to clarify in my mind the big structural issues, then work on a single chapter of the novel, making it fit that overall structure. But at some point,

  • Shakespeare Helps You Write a Better Picture Book

    When you’re thinking about writing a picture book, the structure if important. With about fourteen double-page spreads, it’s time to turn to Shakespeare for some help. Sonnets and Picture Books I think you can compare picture book structure to the structure of poetry. For example, sonnets have 14 lines, picture books can have 14 double-page […]