For all us who enjoy writing, the plot is one of the most important aspects of any story. In the realm of fiction, plot is defined as a series of connected events arranged to provide a pattern and personality to your idea. The plot of a story revolves around the tension between a character striving to reach a goal and the obstacles that stand in the way. This consists of the character, rising action, a climax, falling action, and a conclusion.

Now that we’ve established what a plot is, how do we go about creating a good one? It’s not a simple or straightforward process. Ideas come to everyone in different fashions, but here are a few paths that might help you out.

1. Look to your reading list: You read what you enjoy so plot ideas might bombard you when you sit down to study the comparisons of your favorite books. Are you preferred stories of the same genre? Do they have similar settings? Is there a mix of sad and happy stories or a solid path of the same? Sitting down to really study what you read might light the bulb to an excellent plot idea.

2. Watch the people around you: Many of the best writers base plots and characters around people they see every day. The story might end up vastly fictionalized, but all you need is a spark of insight to set you on the correct road.

3. Examine your interests: Going back to the reading list, this examination will help you find something you enjoy to write about. Things you enjoy doing will be more likely to inspire you.

4. Consider where you live: Familiar settings can lead us to imagine a story to spice up that everyday sight. Think about the street you live on. Does it have unique characteristics? If it’s boring could it be glamorized into a great setting to establish a plot?

5. Brainstorming with questions: We’ve all done it. Sitting down for a brainstorming session with a pen and paper might seem mundane, but try changing it up with a series of questions for yourself. The old “What if” game can be applied to any situation in your life. Use it to sensationalize the event.

Once you have a great plot idea, the rest is up to you. Write to hit it over the fence and make the readers scream for more. Having a wonderful plot is only part of the process. Make sure to supplement it with great writing and you’ll find your name on the bookstore shelves before you know it.


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