Looking at Story Structure Part III

Welcome to a new week, I hope you all had a great weekend. I’ve had a busy week and weekend, copy editing a MS for a publisher all day yesterday to get up to date  and even slightly ahead of schedule. Very satisfying!

So how did you spend your weekends and remember if anyone wants a piece of fiction critiqued here on-line I will open the Fiction Clinic this Friday and can be here in real-time chatting if anyone wants to grill me over on my Facebook page:  LINK. I’ll be there from 8.30 to 9 (UK time) and/or do email me a 500 word piece that needs some TLC (by Thursday latest).

So let’s have a little catch-up. I talked at the end of last week about Brookes’s 4-part structure so what happens in Box 3?

Well after setting up your story and taking it to the threshold, then showing the reaction to the conflict and your hero working out what to do, we now see pro-activity, this is when the hero deals with the conflict in a proactive way. But of course some new information or event has to be the catalyst for this — and this event is the midpoint milestone that takes place between Box 2 and Box 3. This now directs us to the climax of the story, we see the tension cranked up as we head for the climactic scene.  In a lot of the work I critique you would be surprised how often a defined climax is absent or too underplayed so the story feels flat, too linear, and hence not satisfactory for the reader. Everything has to be about the climax, remember that and this is where we feel it coming.  I say to clients, all the time, when you know what your book is about in a sentence or two (and I don’t mean plot I mean theme: it explores a young woman’s sense of connection to the world explored through social media sites, for example to pluck an idea from the air ) — then you should know where it’s heading. What is the question? My example is a bit obscure but even then we can see that the climax has to be the culmination of events that lead to her disconnecting — does the world end if she does or does she only think it will? You see what I mean. I used a weird example because I wanted to show that the analyses by Brookes can not only be applied to the more obvious quest story but ALL stories.

Box 3 ends with the next major plot point in which things change again — the final pieces of the puzzle and the CLIMAX.

Box 4 tomorrow!

Have a great day y’all!

Selfie! The writer in me finally unleashed with the arrival of old age -- reading glasses! Love it!

Selfie! The writer in me finally unleashed with the arrival of old age — reading glasses! Love it! Embrace age 🙂 The best is yet to come!

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