Story plot ideas, for some is hard to find, making the achievement of writing their first novel too daunting to contemplate. Is this you? Well, all is not lost. With some form of a plan it is easier than you first thought. The secret to your dilemma is brainstorming followed by a plot outline of all your ideas.
BRAINSTORMING YOUR STORY PLOT IDEAS
How do you brainstorm something as complex as a plot line in a novel you may ask? Well, the simple answer is just that -SIMPLE. Keep your brainstorming brief, and don’t over-complicate the issue at this stage.
You aren’t trying to write detailed plot outlines now, each one complete with a beginning, a middle, and an ending. And you won’t need the twists and turns at this time.
SEEDS OF A PLOT
All you need is the seed of a plot, or a simple situation from which a more complex story is able to flow. The best way to find this seeds of ideas is to draw up a list of things that you think your leading character might want.
Why? Because if your character wants something – and badly wants it – and if that something isn’t going to be too easy to obtain. And you want to make that person fight for it with everything they have, then you have a small shoot of a story, one you can nurture and grow.
Yes, finding a plot idea really is that simple…
What if you imagine a lonely, thirty something woman with a ticking biological clock. We’ll call her Wendy. One day, Wendy reaches a crisis point: she knows time is running out and she can’t stand to be alone for one more minute.
In other words, all of a sudden she wants something: to find love and companionship. And of course having a family is also high on Wendy’s agenda and she’s desperate to obtain that goal.
Click image for more details
The problem with Wendy’s desire for love and a family she is painfully shy, meaning that a new relationship isn’t going to be easy for her to find. (Novel writing is often about being cruel to the characters so that tension and conflict is developed within the plot)
So from that simple desire, the desire to find a partner, you have the makings of an entire plot in a novel.
The way to draw up a brainstormed list of story plot ideas, then, is to think about all the things that you have ever wanted in life…
- The love of your boss.
- To travel to exotic places.
- To lose weight.
Of course, a lot of the story plot ideas you come up with will end up in the bin. Even with the ones you keep, you probably won’t turn them into a plot. Instead, you will use them as a starting point, from which stronger plot ideas will come.
You simply take all those emotions you felt when your Boss ignored you and multiply them by ten to be able to write convincing fiction about an unrequited love
So when you draw up your own list of plot ideas, don’t worry if the things you wanted were large or small, significant or apparently inconsequential. So long as you felt a strong desire to achieve some specific goal, that is all the spark you require for a gripping plot.
Finally, remember that your finished novel will likely have many strands of plot running through it, all of them weaving their way in and out of each other, but all you are concerned with at the first stage of brainstorming is the central story. Your subplots can wait for another day.