If you’re following my annotations on the 0draft I’m posting to Ko-Fi, you’ll notice that the story as it is now doesn’t follow any beats or structure. As of now, we’re on Part 22, so beyond the midpoint, and there’s a petty crime/action subplot going on with a stalker ex antagonist.
The relationship is intertwined around these and is mainly slice-of-life scenes that I’ve experimented with and tied together into loose chapter sections.
Here are the options:
Romance Novel Beats – Plotting a Romance Novel ~ Really useful links
Romance Beat Sheet – Get a Beat Sheet
Action Genre – How to Tell an Exciting Story
What even is Guy Ritchie’s style anyway – Medium article
The Snowflake Method of plotting ~ How To Write A Novel Using The Snowflake Method (advancedfictionwriting.com)
In Media Res ~ In Medias Res: Definition and Examples for Writers (thewritepractice.com)
The Eight Sequences method ~ The Eight Sequences (thescriptlab.com)
24 Chapter Sequence (adaptable) ~ Free fiction writing template to help you outline your novel (Word, Scrivener, G-Docs, Plottr) – Creativindie
Birds of a Feather: Replotting
I am leaning towards “three disasters plus an ending”, which is sort of what this is already:
Disaster 1 is Phil finding Carrie and Carrie realising she’s being stalked
Disaster 2 is the drugged wine and flowers left at Raven’s
Disaster 3 is Phil losing a finger and it snowballs to the conclusion
EXCEPT that there’s a 4th disaster (or catalyst): Ricky and Wes catching Phil with Dahlia and Wes sending the evidence to Dahlia’s husband, ruining Phil, so it escalates from there and the climax comes out of desperation.
This is the central thread of the plot interwoven with Ricky feuding with the Pierces (Phil is deliberately placed in the crossfire and gets hospitalised as a result, taking him out of the equation for long enough for Carrie and Ricky to get to know each other better, except he comes out with a thirst for vengeance).
I’m going to take out some strands and some of the moving parts of the plot, and try to tighten everything up so they are much more tightly linked, and because I’ve got 4 discernible main Phil points, I might look at the Eight Sequences instead. The subplot needs to be strong to carry the action until we get to the climax, and that is (I hope) what the whole thing with Ricky/Carrie is, as they build to being each others’ person.
My main thing with revisions is to decide on the shape of the plot and hang the chapters and scenes around that, reshaping the skeleton of it to create something that’s a clear structure.
This is hopefully going to be a good way for me to get back into THE DAY WE ATE GRANDAD, which is also undergoing a structural revision. I don’t tend to have a preferred plot structure except that I usually aim for a dramatic midpoint build, and then hurtle to a climax (but the second act can sag or not be long enough if I have too much or too little going on). But I also like to have a few peaks building up to the midpoint and so on, and I often have too many strands at once because I want to tell too many stories (it’s the ADHD).
Anyway: happy fun times with my joy project await. Hope some of those links are helpful for others too!
You can read the 0draft with all my annotations on my writing process and out-of-order sequence writing and how I worked out the contemporary setting and characterisations on Ko-Fi. The first part is free to all, the rest is for supporters only (one-off supporters get 30 day access to all my subscriber-only posts, and monthly subscribers get unlimited access to everything).