If you were to check out one of my notebooks or randomly scan my desk, you'd find out that I'm a huge fan of lists. So it's no wonder that when I'm writing or outlining a new book that I like to find a variety of lists to help in the process: from how to structure a novel to important character attributes to include.
|Example of Three-Act Structure from www.elementsofcinema.com|
- Three-Act Structure: a good summary of this can be found on the Elements of Cinema page here. Basically when used to structure a novel (or screenplay--as it's most well known for) you'd have three-acts: set-up, confrontation, and resolution. If you want the three-act structure outlined in relation to novels, here is a good link.
- Blake Snyder's "Save the Cat" Beat sheet: here's an excellent summary of the beat sheet that basically breaks the three-act structure up into bite-sized sections, from having an opening image, stating the theme, the b story, and a ton more.
- Four-Act Structure: Diana Peterfreund did a nice summary awhile ago on why she likes the four-act structure. She outlined the four acts as:
Act One: Ordinary world and inciting incident
Act Two: Complications leading to a crisis.
Act Three: Consequences of that crisis leading to a climax.
Act Four: Climax and resolution.
- Five-Act Structure: here's a good description on bubblecow.net of the five-act structure. Basically the five acts are exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, and then the resolution.
Example of Five-Act structure (or the Freytag Pyramid) from bubblecow.net
- The Snowflake Method: here is an article about that on advancedfictionwriting.com. This is more of a process than how to structure a novel. But you go through 10 steps starting with creating a one-sentence summary of your novel and then ending with writing the first draft.
Any other lists or plot/structure outlines that you use? I'd love to hear about them!
--Emily, Miss Querylicious