Your Fiction Plotting Essentials’ Checklist

Your Fiction Plotting Essentials’ Checklist

I love fiction plotting; it’s huge fun. You’re putting all the elements together which you’ll turn into an amazing short story, novella, or novel.

You’re in charge. Once you’ve decided on the elements, you can write with confidence. Of course, you’ll change some of the elements while writing. That’s the fun of fiction — your characters are coming alive.

Let’s look at the elements of plotting fiction.

Create your nine elements of a successful plot

  1. A setting
  2. Locations within that setting
  3. A main character, and his opposition: two conflicted characters (they’re imperfect people, they have inner obstacles)
  4. A story question/ challenge
  5. The kickoff (an event that kickstarts your story)
  6. The point of no return: your character MUST move forward
  7. The horror: your main character’s lowest point
  8. The battle: the final face-off between your main character and his opposition
  9. Ephipany: “I’ve changed, and everything was worth it” — your main character achieves his goal. All is resolved.

Start with the setting — and genre

You’ll notice that our first element is Setting. That’s a gentle way of nudging you into the realization that you need to choose a genre.


Pantser? Start with elements 1, 2, and 3

By nature I’m a pantser… That is, I prefer to wing the plot. I bore myself (and readers) silly when I force myself to work out a complete plot from go to whoa.

I can do it — in the days when I wrote for traditional publishers, I had to do it. The actual novel’s plot however ended up much, much different from the outline.

So if you’re a pantser like me, nail down the first three elements and start writing. With your first draft completed, you can create an outline to ensure you’ve included the other elements.

Plotter? Go for it — start plotting

If you prefer to plot, plot away. Add some life and magic to the elements. Shade your characters… 🙂

Resources to build your writing career

Get daily writing news and tips on the blog’s Facebook page.

Need help with your writing? Visit our online store, or check out our ebooks for writers.

Plot Hot-Selling Fiction The Easy Way

Plot Hot-Selling Fiction The Easy Way

Series: Selling Writer Strategies, Book 3
Genre: Writing
How To Write Novels And Short Stories Readers Love: You're about to discover the easiest, fastest, and most fun plotting method ever. You can use it for all your fiction, whether you're writing short stories, novellas or novels. Take control of your fiction now, and publish more, more easily. More info →
Buy from Barnes and Noble Nook
Buy from Scribd
Buy from Kobo
Buy from Apple iBooks
Buy from Amazon Kindle
The following two tabs change content below.
Angela Booth is a top copywriter, multi-published author, and writing teacher. She offers many guides, courses and classes to help writers to enhance their skills on her websites. She also provides inspiration and motivation for writers on her writing blogs. Angela has been writing successfully since the late 1970s, and was online in the 1980s, long before the birth of the Web. Her business books have been widely published.