To Hit The Spot Do You Plot Or Not?

Once upon a time, I thought I knew enough about storytelling to drive a novel toward the Happily Ever After by writing from the seat of my pants, figuring things would unfold organically…eventually…

Instead of reaching the HEA, a few other things often happened. The story’d hit a wall. Or I’d lose sight of the ending. Or get bored. Or a “better” idea would crop up. I’d drop this story for that story and never finish any story. I wish I’d learned to be a better plotter sooner because I could’ve saved myself a lot of trouble and spared dumping years’ worth of unfinished projects.

A plot is like giving your characters a map to keep them on course,
Otherwise they may wind up lost,
Or worse, in a ditch.

Just like I need a GPS to get anywhere outside a ten-mile radius of my neighborhood, I need an outline to get my Contemporary Romance story from the Meet-Cute to the Resolution. These are a few of my favorite things to help me plot:
Andy Rutter’s 3 Act Timeline Structure

Still not sure about plotting? Here’s a video to help explain:



2 thoughts on “To Hit The Spot Do You Plot Or Not?

  1. Great post! I hadn’t heard of these plotting tools before coming here.I like to think of myself as a pantser, but I know I need to do some intense planning – if not actual plotting – before I start to write. I use Karen Docter’s W-Plot faithfully because it allows me to put in as much or as little information as my muse will allow and still keep me focused. Mostly. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have Karen’s W-Plot next to the refrigerator! I love visuals. The more maps in different views the better. I need to see the high and lows. And I also think the muse needs a little freedom otherwise he won’t want to come out and play 🙂

      Thanks for checking out the post, Debora.


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