(Craft) Plot Points

Plot points are the hinges on which your story hang.  They are the points to which we write and from which we write. 

Plot points must occur in the right places in order for your story to be structured properly. The First Plot Point occurs at the end of the first act of your story. Author and writing coach Larry Brooks, in his outstanding book Story Engineering, calls it “the most important moment in your story” (p. 173). It is the point when everything in your heroine’s life suddenly changes, compelling her to respond in some way. This response sets in motion the story’s conflict.

The Second Plot Point is the point at which you, the author, have your last opportunity to add new information into your story.  After the Second Plot Point, you can add no new information without jeopardizing the structure of your story and the allegiance of your reader.  It is at the Second Plot Point that your story moves from crisis or climax to resolution.

 It is a good idea to establish your plot points before you write your story. If not, at least make sure that you place them in the proper places in your story.

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Resources Cited: 
Brooks, Larry. STORY ENGINEERING. Writer’s Digest Books. Cinncinnati, 2011.
Field, Syd. THE DEFINITIVE GUIDE TO SCREENWRITING. Ebury Press, UK, 2003.

Copyright by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved.

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