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Paula Wynne

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8 Point Story Arc


This all sounds extremely formulaic, but it doesn’t have to be. Yes, having some kind of basic structure woven around your novel and plot threads is important, but they are meant to be flexible.

The ‘Blueprints’ chapter of Pimp My Fiction provides templates for writing your novel, which are certain to show you a light at the end of the writing tunnel.

This 8 point arc was created by Nigel Watts, and it’s a perfect tool for keeping your story on track. When you start a new novel, this template is a good exercise to guide you into writing up a very loose and basic idea of how your story is going to pan out.

You may find that your plot hits on all these points, and you’ll feel great knowing that you’re on the right track.

Nigel’s eight points:

1.    Stasis
2.    Trigger
3.    The quest
4.    Surprise
5.    Critical choice
6.    Climax
7.    Reversal
8.    Resolution

If you make notes straight into a document which describes each stage, it is pretty easy to plot out your storyline. It acts almost like a synopsis of how your story progresses with character growth points. Once you have established the basic plan, you can continue to add sub plots and any other notes into the eight stages as they come to you. This bare outline slowly builds into the skeleton of your novel.

Find more on Story Structures.

Grab your copy free copy of Pimp My Fiction here.

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Paula Wynne

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