Make sure your plot is credible, that you pay close attention to all key aspects.
The reader needs to understand the character enough to know what motivates all key action points: so what they want and what’s at stake if they don’t get it.
But also make sure the actions of others and the event or plot incident itself is plausible. I have read a lot over the past few weeks where it was not only difficult to buy into decisions made, but also how the plot unfolded. You will lose your reader if yo don’t make sure you edit for ‘believability’. I sometimes include a whole section on this in reports if needed, and certainly it’s something I am asked to look at in Cornerstone reports.
Take crime thrillers where you also use police procedure, for example, then you have to get it right, even within something written as fiction, and therefore, by definition made up. There are very tight reader expectations in this one. I, as you know, find research essential as there is still an obligation to truth; however small a point that might be. Even how to grow carrots on an east London allotment!
In speculative fiction and the realms of sci-fi and magical realism you may have more scope for invention, but then you have to be loyal to the rules you establish in your world-building. There is a reader expectation with that as well. And no matter the genre, characters have to behave in ways reader’s recognize and understand.
Here endeth the lesson… got some ‘believable’ plotting to do! Important moment reached on my east London allotment! I have a solar eclipse to write 🙂
Have a great day everyone… whatever you do … even growing carrots?