Plot Development

The Story Swamp

Sometimes writers think up a character and jump straight into writing, without fully fleshing out the concept at a foundational level. This then means they falter and end up writing a very confused draft. I call this ‘The Story Swamp.’

Avoid The Story Swamp by writing a ‘logline’ or ‘pitch’ of approximately 25-60 words. This logline should cover what B2W calls The 3 Cs:

Character: Who is your protagonist? What does s/he need or want?
Conflict: Who is the antagonist? Why does s/he want to stop or counter your protagonist? What other obstacles are in your protagonist’s way?
Clarity: Do we know what genre or type of story this is? Are you using familiar or clichéd language? Are your word choices too vague?


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