Last week I did part one of the sum-up from the class I held at the Las Vegas Writers Conference.
I showed how movies are plotted, what plot points are, and how to use them.
This week, I will show you how you can take those same Plot Points, twist them to match your novel, and use them to improve the plot and pace of your manuscripts.
Since novels vary so much in word count, the plot points below can be adjusted to match your specific book.
If you're like me, a New Adult author who writes below 80 K, then you might need to move the Plot Points closer together.
If you're like R.R Martin, or Stephanie Meyer, or anyone who writes books that range from 800 to 1000 pages, then you'll need to space the Plot Points farther apart.
In this case, I adjusted the screenplay's Plot Points to fit an average sized novel at 400 pages.
If you need a refresher from last week, don't worry.
I'm reposting the Screenplay formula and Plot Point chart.
What are the PLOT POINTS?
Before the first Plot Point, we establish the character’s world as it is. This is where we get to know our character and their everyday life before their world changes.
The INCITING INCIDENT or The Catalyst, is where the story kicks off. The Inciting Incident is the first movement of the plot that takes us away from Status Quo and leads us in a new direction.
The NEW WORLD is known as Plot Point One. This is the end of Act I and where we enter the new world. This is usually where the characters make a choice to commit to a journey, or a goal.
The ALMOST KISS Moment. In a Romantic Comedy this could be the point where one, or both of the main characters, have a moment that shows us that they have feelings for one and other. If it’s not a romantic comedy, this is usually a moment where the character almost gets something they want. But they’ve either gone about it the wrong way, they lose it, or experience a setback.
The MID-POINT is where the plot or character movement takes a dramatic turn. Most of the time, but not always, it's for the worse of the character.
The POINT OF NO RETURN is usually where the characters have regrouped from whatever happen at the mid-point and it’s the development of the final plan. Whatever choice the characters make here, they can’t go back.
The TWIST is the End of Act II, also called Plot Point Two. This is where a big turn of events take place. Usually this is where the protagonist has reached their goal, but when they do, something unexpected happens.
CLIMAX: This is where it all goes down. The climax is your typical Good Vs. Evil duke it out, our character battles his or her antagonist, whether it’s an actual physical “Bad Guy” or an emotional one.
THE RESOLUTION: Is the end of Act III. This is a very quick thing, a few minutes tops, where we see the outcome and how our characters lives have changed, hopefully for the better.
If anyone (whether you were a part of the conference or not) have any questions on this, feel free to comment. I'll be happy to answer anything!