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Responses

  1. acetachyon (Member)

    Posted 11 years ago

    Just checking. Wanted to stay within proper forum etiquette and all that.

    Here's a further question--for those of you who write from a general idea then let your characters loose, keeping only a vague outline, do you also keep in mind any sort of Three Act Structure? You know: Chase hero up tree, throw rocks at him, get him down from tree? That sort of thing?

    KAT AND MOUSE, GUNS FOR HIRE When the going gets tough, the tough shoot back
  2. grantcravens (Member)

    Posted 11 years ago

    K, I'll be the jerk that bumps a four-month dormant thread to answer a question...

    <i>Here's a further question--for those of you who write from a general idea then let your characters loose, keeping only a vague outline, do you also keep in mind any sort of Three Act Structure? You know: Chase hero up tree, throw rocks at him, get him down from tree? That sort of thing?</i>

    Part of the fun of keeping things loose is finding out, when the hero is in the tree, maybe the hero doesn't want to come down. Or that the hero doesn't go up the tree to begin with. Or maybe the hero runs around the tree, and chases the baddie away. As Warlocktopus pointed out *squints* 5 months ago, a story with good characters will take the plot where it should be going. Sometimes that scares and confuses you for a while, but it makes the story better.

    Boat Story: kidnapped kids, mysterious maps, debt, tropical storms, pirates, sea monsters, family, tea.
  3. Murazrai (Member)

    Posted 11 years ago

    @acetachyon - This kind of writing technique will only ruin the combats in my novel. Most of the time it will be like an attack, a counterattack and the process is repeated until someone is hit and start another phase of attack.

    Chaos Fighters...the fantasy of the scientific magic.
  4. Reyben (Member)

    Posted 11 years ago

    This thread is older here than I, so I must thank grantcraven for the bump, or I should surely have never known the pleasure of reading Warlocktopus's old reply.

    I always know the end from the start, and it's never the end that I end up with- wait, what? Yes, that does make sense. Good. Anyway. The Actual End usually starts to crystallize itself about halfway through writing, when I know enough about plot elements to firmly judge the story's organic direction. I used to try to shoe-horn things back into their old pre-planned plots, but the characters never let me (disobedient little things. I wish I had some kind of control over them).

    "Part of the fun of keeping things loose is finding out, when the hero is in the tree, maybe the hero doesn't want to come down."
    -This often happens. On one occasion, a character was supposed to get into a punch-up to solidify his reputation, but no, he didn't want to get into a fight. He said: "Let me be smart instead of tough," and somehow it worked. I dread the day when I write something and the main villain decides he doesn't WANT to make that crucial mistake (or whatever), because then the good guys are quite simply going to loose and there's nothing I can do about it.

    Three Act Structure: Ahahaha, funny you should mention that. Because of it's slightly odd format, "Knightfall" is actually written in a series of interlocking FOUR act slots- each part has four acts (well, a prelude and three acts, but you get what I mean), and the series overall is four parts long. This actually meant I had to do some really specific pacing, which I hadn't tried before. It got a bit out of hand in parts two and three, where suddenly EVERYTHING HAPPENS AT ONCE- I had to go back and smooth that out quite a lot. But it was interesting to be able to put everything into a specific stage of story. There's an old axiom holding that [almost] every good story follows the same basic structure: Introduction, Complication, Rising Action and Climax (possibly followed by a denouement). It was great to be able to track that so specifically, and consciously identify the exact Story-Switchboxes at which modes changed.

    All of the above has one outstanding virtue, in that it generally allows me to avoid Huge Screaming Deus Ex Machinas. I think I've only outright used a Machine-God once, not having a choice about it, and I was pretty ashamed- the story can no longer be found on my hard drive. I wonder... does anybody else here have any Dirty Deus Ex Machina secrets? Or have you all been diligent enough plotters to make me the only deviant?

  5. Reyben (Member)

    Posted 11 years ago

    ...Twin posts, sorry. Move along, nothing to see here...

  6. sandrafowke (Member)

    Posted 11 years ago

    I know this is an old post but I wanted to share how I work as well. Right now I'm working chapter the chapter, so each is sort of a story of it's own with beginning, buildup, climax and almost-ending. I have a list of events that I want to happen in the upcoming chapters, a strong grasp of my two main characters and from that point I just let them flow. It always surprises me how my characters seem to know where they want to go and if I try to intervene they stop dead. But I don't hear their voices in my head... Oh no - nope - no no. *cough*

    First Serialized Web Novel - Not with a Bang This is how the world ends...
  7. Tahjir (Member)

    Posted 11 years ago

    Well, I might as well add my piece while this thread is still active...

    I don't really plot at all. I've got the general idea of where I'm headed outlined, structure-wise, but beyond that it's all just vague ideas. From reading the other replies, this seems to be a pretty popular technique. I find it really helps, not being bound to a rigid structure. Things always seem to end up more interesting or, at least in my case, weirder.

    Apocalyptic Urban Fantasy
    http://hangarninetysix.wordpress.com/

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