Hey everyone, Trynda here.
With Camp NanNoWriMo around the corner in April, I figured I’d bring you a video on outlining and how I go about doing mine.
As you know from my newbie video, I am planser so, what I use is a worksheet that I found on a writer’s digest a few years ago and I use it kind of as a template so I can get my ideas down and see if I’m missing anything or creating potholes that I may run into a little later.
So, I’m going to go ahead and show you on my computer what that outline looks like and I will see you in a bit. For this outline that I’m doing today, I picked the The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe just for the fact that most people have either seen the movie or read the book so they’ll know what’s going on in the scenes that I’m talking about.
If you want a closer look at this outline, I’m going to put up for my Patreon so, keep an eye out for that if you’re interested.
This outline structure is a three act structures so basically, what that means is you have your beginning, middle and end in the three acts. In the first two acts, you have your attention in your action rising and then in the third act, you have your climax where everything boils over and the resolution where everything ties up shortly after but this type of outline I found it works well for most stories but ultimately, it will come down to what story you want to tell and how you want to tell it.
The way that I do this outline is I often start with what’s easiest or what comes to mind first. Usually, I’ll start with the hook or the inciting incident. The initial incident is often the first plot point that you have in your story and this is what grabs the reader’s attention and keeps them moving forward and reading the story. After the initial hook or incident, you have the turning point and this is where the protagonist gets dragged into the next act. Often times, they’ll be resistant, trying to run away from this and you’ll just have to keep them pulled in.
The next big thing we have to consider is the midpoint reversal. This is in the middle of Act two and it’s the incident that changes the direction of the story so what that midpoint reversal would do in terms of changing the direction is often making the protagonists go from reactive to proactive. So, instead of running away from their problems, they’re going to be facing them head on and trying to find a way to fix them instead of hoping they would fix themselves. Sometimes, you’ll hear about a “saggy middle”, and often this can come from not having a mid-point reversal to drag your plot into the second turning point and keep your reader engaged.
So, the second turning point is the next major plot point and it’s what often moves the characters in the story into Act three. So, in act three, we have the final obstacle and this is where the protagonist has to overcome something in order to get to the climax. Now that we’re at the climax, this is where the height of the action takes place, where shit hits the fan or the giant battle takes place and then after that, you have the resolution.
This is where any loose ends or subplots get tied up into a ending that is satisfying for the reader. So, some things to remember is that you can always add, remove or change things as you need to.
If there’s something you don’t know or sure about, you can always skip it and go back to it later or just not include it if you feel like it. This outline isn’t meant to be constricting in any way so, don’t feel like you have to have add tons of details. I always add as little or as much as I want to add for any particular aspect of it. There is even a few times where I’ve gone back, I think, and added a line or two thinking that it wasn’t enough later on.
So, that’s it for now guys if you liked what you saw, hit the like button. If you have any comments or questions feel free to leave them in the comments section, and if you want to see more videos, hit the subscribe button down below and I will talk to you guys later.
Writer’s Digest worksheets: http://www.writersdigest.com/writing-articles/by-writing-goal/write-first-chapter-get-started/novel-in-30-days-2011
At-A-Glance Outline: http://www.writersdigest.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/30Days-At-a-Glance-Outline.pdf
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Outline Completed: https://www.patreon.com/posts/8343847
Go Not Gently by Audionautix is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)