All week long these writing prompts have helped you create a story arc.
We will continue this trend today. As a recap, we have created our narrative arc, made it more exciting and added the pre-inciting subplot. We then followed it up by adding a Denouement Spike at the ending.
There is one thing left to do before we move to characters, can you guess what it is?
Yes! Standard sub plots. What story is complete without a few twist, turns and random tangents? None of them.
If you haven’t noticed, this week’s prompts have been more mental than actual writing. Seems contradictory, doesn’t it?
Perhaps a bit, but thinking is a crucial element of any story teller. That is what you are. You can call yourself a writer, or an author or “Steve.” The fact remains, you are telling a story.
To tell it correctly, you need to plan, plot and scheme. Thinking about what you are going to write, the story you are going to tell and who you are telling it to, is just as important as the actual words on paper.
So, it is time to add those twists and turns!
Add several sub plots to your story at each major event in the narrative arc.
Seems simple, doesn’t it? You take your carefully crafted narrative arc we have worked on all week and you just add some subplots to it.
Before you start typing, though, you need to stop and think.
This is the hardest part for any writer, and I mean that, this time. We all go through this thing where we think we have our story figured out.
A new idea, a new twist, something happens to a character we didn’t plan. And now we have to deal with it.
To help with that, it is best to think now. So pull our your narrative arc and have a look at it.
Keep in mind we still haven’t added our character arcs to the plot line yet. We will.
For now, think about the story itself. Where can it go wrong? Where can we logically lead the reader without making them too mad?
The idea behind a subplot is to give the readers more details. But we also want to use them for misdirection. Subplots are also perfect for answering reader questions.
For example, if you have alluded that the killer in your story could be Jan, then you can use a subplot to explain why it couldn’t be her.
Perhaps Jan had dance class and was doing a rehearsal at the time of the killing, or she walked by and saw it take place and ran.
Here is why story subplots are so hard (and important). Each one will deal with a character in some way. That character or way hasn’t been added to the story arc yet, though.
Try to add at least one major subplot for each section of your narrative arc. With the pre-inciting subplot and denouement spike already in place, you can ignore those two areas.
Figure out another subplot for the rising action, climax, falling action and resolution.
What would make your story deeper? What would make it memorable?
Once you have them added, post your full narrative arc in the comment section so we can all marvel at your greatness!