Plot: Fill, #Preptober Day 27

As noted yesterday, today’s goal is to start filling in the gaps between the big plot points you sketched out yesterday.

Now, I don’t want to give away my whole novel here, so I’ll spare you all the minute details of my own plot, but the basic idea is to keep building on your outline. Right now you’ve got several big scenes chunked out, so fill in additional important scenes that will take you from one to the next.

If you’ve already got it chunked out as much as you can, start thinking about beats.

What’s a beat? Screenwriters and playwrights use this term to mean the smallest unit in fiction. These could be single lines of dialogue, images, emotions, settings, or moments of action (or inaction). As with sketching out a big picture, beats are the kind of shorthand sketches of smaller pieces of your story that can jog your memory about things you need to include. I think of them as the To Do List of writing your story. Fill them in, and your story will start to take shape.

For more info on beats and how to write them, check out Blake Snyder’s Save the Cat! website, where you can find beat sheets for tons of your favorite movies. You can also download his free 15-point beat sheet to help you structure your story around standard screenwriting beats.

Want to prep with me?

Start filling in YOUR story’s plot today and tell us how your prepping is going in the comments! Or, post about your progress on your blog, and be sure to use the hashtag #Preptober when sharing on social media so we can find each other.

Don’t forget to grab a free copy of my Preptober Prompts Printable, which you can print out for personal use.

See you tomorrow with a new prompt!