Plotting Techniques:
From Novice to Expert in Fiction Writing

Read more Writing a novel

Plotting Techniques

For both novice and experienced fiction writers, creating a compelling and well-structured plot is a journey that requires dedication, creativity, and mastery of essential techniques. A captivating plot not only keeps readers engaged but also provides a solid foundation for the entire narrative. In this blog post, we will explore plotting techniques that can elevate your fiction writing from novice to expert, with a particular emphasis on the importance of assigning tags to segments of the story to better control the narrative.

  1. Understanding the Basics of Plot
    At its core, a plot is the sequence of events that unfold in a story, leading to its resolution. It encompasses the rising action, climax, and resolution, taking readers on an emotional rollercoaster. To create a strong plot, start by outlining the central conflict and the goals your characters seek to achieve. As you develop your story, consider how these elements interact to create tension and propel the narrative forward.

    For example, in a mystery novel, the central conflict could be a murder that needs to be solved, and the protagonist's goal is to identify the killer. The plot thickens as clues are discovered, suspects are introduced, and the tension escalates toward the climactic reveal.
  2. Outlining and Storyboarding
    Outlining and storyboarding are fundamental techniques that help writers organize their thoughts and create a cohesive structure for their stories.

    Outlining involves creating a detailed plan that outlines the main plot points, character arcs, and key events of the story. This serves as a roadmap, keeping the writer on track and preventing the plot from derailing into tangents.

    Storyboarding, on the other hand, is a visual technique often used in film and animation, but it can be adapted for writing. Creating a storyboard involves sketching out key scenes and moments in the story, helping writers visualize the narrative's flow and progression.

    By utilizing both outlining and storyboarding, writers can ensure a well-structured plot that maintains its focus and drives the story forward effectively.
  3. Assigning Tags for Narrative Control
    As your story unfolds, it may branch into multiple plotlines and character arcs. Assigning tags to different segments of the story can be invaluable in maintaining control over these narrative threads.

    Tags are like labels that categorize specific elements in your story. They can represent different plotlines, character arcs, locations, or themes. By using tags, writers can easily navigate through their work, make connections between different parts of the story, and ensure consistency throughout the narrative.

    For example, imagine you are writing a fantasy novel with multiple character perspectives. You can assign tags to each character's storylines, such as "Heroine A", "Antagonist B", and "Supporting Character C". This allows you to switch between perspectives while keeping each arc organized and distinct.
  4. Balancing Action and Emotion
    A well-rounded plot should strike a balance between action and emotion. Engaging action sequences keep readers on the edge of their seats, while emotional moments create a strong connection between readers and characters.

    As you develop your plot, pay attention to the pacing of action and emotion. A constant barrage of action may exhaust readers, while an abundance of emotional scenes without significant progression in the plot may lead to disinterest.

    Consider a romance novel; while romantic gestures and heartfelt conversations are crucial, it is also important to have moments of conflict or obstacles to overcome to drive the story forward.
  5. Creating Memorable Climaxes and Resolutions
    The climax is the culmination of the story's tension and conflict. It is the moment of highest intensity when the protagonist faces their most significant challenge. Crafting a powerful climax is essential to keeping readers engaged and satisfied.

    The resolution, on the other hand, ties up loose ends and provides a sense of closure for the reader. It should address the central conflict and character arcs while leaving room for a satisfying conclusion.

    To create a memorable climax and resolution, consider how the events in the story have shaped the characters and led to their growth. Tie up loose ends and provide a resolution that feels both realistic and emotionally resonant.




In Conclusion

Plotting is an essential skill in fiction writing that requires both creativity and structure. As you progress from a novice to an expert, focus on understanding the basics of plot, utilizing outlining and storyboarding techniques, and effectively assigning tags to control the narrative.

By combining these plotting techniques, you can craft a compelling and well-structured story that keeps readers eagerly turning pages. Remember that mastering plot development is an ongoing process, and each project offers a chance to refine your skills further.

So, embrace the journey of writing, experiment with different approaches, and let your imagination soar as you construct intricate and unforgettable plots for your readers to enjoy.

Happy writing!





Start writing with TwelvePoint



Download on the Mac App Store
(Mac Intel, Apple Silicon)
Download on the App Store
(iPhone, iPad, Apple Vision Pro)




Our community

Remember that you can always reach us via e-mail or on social networks: Instagram, 𝕏, Patreon.
We constantly update TwelvePoint to provide you with state-of-the-art screenwriting software. The feedback from our community is considered when developing new functionalities or removing those that are not needed anymore.

Learn more: Screenwriting Software | Write anywhere with TwelvePoint