Search Results for: pinch points

What Are Pinch Points? And How Can They Make Your Book Easier to Write?

What Are Pinch Points? And How Can They Make Your Book Easier to Write?

You may have heard of these little darlings called “Pinch Points.” Of all the important structural moments in your story, they’re the most likely to be neglected. They get lost amidst all the excited chatter about their bigger, flashier brethren: the Plot Points. But Pinch Points–two of them, both occurring in the Second Act–are crucial […]

guardians of the galaxy vol 2

Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2

Movie: Directed by James Gunn. Inciting Event: After Rocket steals the Sovereign people’s priceless batteries, the Guardians are saved by a mysterious man riding his own spaceship. This man (Ego) will drive the main conflict, ergo his appearance is the first brush with that conflict. Meanwhile, protagonist Peter Quill’s old boss Yondu (who has been […]

The Great Novel-Writing Checklist (Just in Time for NaNoWriMo!)

I adore lists. They bring order to the chaos of my brain and allow me to rest in the knowledge that even if I don’t remember everything I have to do, the list remembers [spoken in an epic Jeremy Irons bass]. This is why today I’m going to share you with you my ultimate novel-writing checklist—and […]

Bell Jar Sylvia Plath

The Bell Jar

Book: By Sylvia Plath. Inciting Event: After losing focus during her paid internship with a famous woman’s magazine, during her summer break from college, Esther is confronted by the editor about her future—and she passively resists the choices open to her as a woman. The structural turning point here is subtle and best seen in […]

3 10 to Yuma Glenn Ford Van Heflin 1957

3:10 to Yuma (1957)

Movie: Directed by Delmer Daves. Inciting Event: Desperate ranch owner Dan Evans escorts marooned stage line owner Mr. Butterfield towards Bisbee, Arizona, where they encounter a posse chasing after outlaw Ben Wade, who held up the stage. They realize Wade is still back in Bisbee, and since Evans has business there anyway (attempting to borrow […]

Moby Dick Herman Melville

Moby Dick

Book: By Herman Melville. Inciting Event: The nominal main character Ishmael signs on aboard the Nantucket whaler Pequod and hears the first rumblings about the strange Captain Ahab. Everything up to this point has been setup, before finally brushing Ishmael (and the readers) up against what will be the main conflict created by this very […]

fantastic beasts and where to find them

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Movie: Directed by David Yates. Inciting Event: When Newt is arrested by disgraced investigative officer Tina, his magical case is accidentally exchanged for the case full of donuts, belonging to the “No-Mag” Jacob Kowalski. As a result, he is released by Graves and the head of MACUSA (Magical Congress of the United States), who have […]

March 2015 | Podcast Episode Archive

Subscribe to the Helping Writers Become Authors podcast on iTunes. March 2015 What Are Pinch Points? And How Can They Make Your Book Easier to Write?: What are pinch points? Of all the important moments in your story, they are most likely to be neglected. But they’re crucial to your story structure. Your Book’s Inciting Event: […]

Top 3 Ways to Rivet Readers with Plot Twists

Top 10 Ways to Rivet Readers with Plot Reveals

Today, I’m going to show you how to make stuff happen in your story. Duh, right? What could be easier? You put characters on the page, they dance around, stuff happens. Mission accomplished. Except if you’re not using plot reveals to execute all this happenin’ stuff, your readers may end up bored anyway. What are plot reveals? […]

How to Structure Your Story’s Outline (How to Outline for NaNoWriMo, Pt. 7)

Story outline and story structure—are they different terms describing the same thing? This is a question I frequently receive, and the answer is, “No, they’re completely different concepts and tools.” But learning how to structure your story’s outline is a crucial part of the preparation process. So what’s the difference between outlining and structuring? Outlining is a process, in […]