Plot Structure

Yesterday I threatened to post every day until I got bored or you did. I make good on my promises, which is really all a threat is. goofy grins.

One of the many, many panels I attended at Norwescon was one on different forms of plot structure. At the end of the panel, during Q&A another attendee asked for advice on her plot. The moderator gave the best answer ever. He said it sounded like she was trying to learn to juggle and had started out with 5 chain saws. He suggested she go back and work with silk scarves for a bit.

I don’t think I heard anyone else’s answer to her question because immediately I was sucked into my own mind processing this idea. And it made total sense. My spy novel is 3 chainsaws. That romance I wrote last nano, that was my silk scarves. The novel I was to do, rewriting world war 2, that is my five chainsaws.


So what does that really mean for me? It means this year for nano I need to find something between silk scarves and 3 chainsaws. What’s the writing equivalent to like 3 foam bowling pins?

As a side note on this panel was a gentleman who writes choose your own adventure novels for adults. Bad Ass!

Matt Youngmark is his name, I add a link for him in case your are interested. I have not yet read any of his books but I will.

6 thoughts on “Plot Structure

  1. That is the best analogy I’ve heard related to writing yet, and something I need to work on myself. Last year, I wanted to write a adult fantasy romance, but soon discovered it was my own chainsaws in that I knew almost nothing about world-building. It’s since been put to the side and I’ve returned to YA paranormal novels.

    I love the idea of adult choose your own adventures. It’s something I think would be fun to try some day.


    1. World building. Ugh. I have enough trouble operating in this world. Laughing. But there were some fun panels on world building at NORWESCON. The best advice I heard from that was use Earth as a prototype and focus on only building what you must absolutely have in the story. ie. Build only a valley if that’s where things will take place.


      1. I have an entire series that will take place across the span of two continents and a few islands. However, the good thing is that it’s a future Earth… like a few thousand years future, so I have the pleasure of looking at future maps of Earth to plan my world off of. 🙂 That’s always a plus.


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