How do you come up with a good plot?

I think we all go through this question in our heads almost daily. What will make a good story? What will be interesting and hold attention all the way through while also maintaining some kind of purpose?

A lot of the times it comes from the characters. Build a good character with clearly defined traits and a firm goal in mind, even if that goal is simple. Make it their greatest desire and the plot will come from the character trying to reach that goal.

Sometimes, getting started can be the hardest part of a story. I try to start by answering a simple question: why today? What special thing or event is happening that starts the story? Have a reason to begin where you begin. I started off my second novel with the death and funeral of a family member. This brings almost all the characters together and sets the whole story in motion. Don’t start your story on an average sunny day just like all the rest. Maybe your character loses their job or significant other. Maybe some catastrophic event happen. Give a good reason to start your story. Not only will it give it a good hook, something to keep the audience reading, but it will spark the movement of the plot better than almost anything else.

Once you’ve gotten started, I suggest making an outline or a rough sketch of the characters and what they do and how they change throughout the events of the story. Not only will this help you keep track of everything as you write but it may also reveal certain paths you can take with your plot.

Also, don’t be afraid to write about your own life. We write what we know so feel free to take events, characters, and stories from your everyday life and insert them into your story. It will give your story a good sense of reality and provide some interesting material.

So it’s really easy to come up with a good plot, you just have to get out there and start writing.

What are some ways that you plot out your stories?



Posted by Wes Laudeman

Writer, hiker, and future teacher, I'm looking for stories and adventures that will last a lifetime.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s