Below is a story outline. Below that are the terms used in the outline.
Generic Story Outline
This is where you see the cause of what’s about to happen.
This is the event the cause…caused to happen.
This is what happened as a result of that thing happening.
Introduce the protagonist and the setting. Show the protagonist in his natural setting doing what he always does the way he always does it. Show how life usually reacts to him doing what he usually does. Show what the protagonist loves, hates, fears and hopes for most. Show what he’s best and worst at. Show who he is and who is isn’t, what he does and what he doesn’t.
The worst possible thing that could possibly happen to the protagonist happens. He loses that which is most dear to him.
The protagonist must decide to set the universe right again. Show how he makes that decision and why.
If the protagonist already had everything necessary to solve the problem then it would have been solved already. So he has to gather the resources he’ll need to use to solve the problem.
Once the protagonist has those resources, he goes about applying them to the problem.
There is a key moment where the solution and the problem meet and the solution neutralizes the problem conclusively. For example: throwing water on a witch. The audience needs to see the final event in full detail.
There wouldn’t have been a journey if there wasn’t a prize. The audience needs to see the protagonist pick up the prize in full detail.
The protagonist didn’t come all this way to get a prize and just hold it up for the crowd to admire the rest of his life. He planned on doing something with that prize. Show the first thing the protagonist does with the prize…or what it does to him.
For the sake of closure, show the audience what the long term future holds for the protagonist.
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Plot break downs
- Back to the Future
- Good Will Hunting
- Avengers Assemble S01E05: Blood Feud
- Twilight Zone S01E01: Where is Everybody
General writing advice
- Does substance abuse make you a better writer?
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- 10 reasons why writers should blog
- Why using proper grammar is important in life
- 11 things I learned about blogging from blogging on Myspace
- Why you shouldn’t mock aspiring writers
- The science of thought/creativity
- How do you eat an elephant? (An inspirational short story)