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When it comes to forming a plot for your story, every writer has their own way of doing it. Their own process. None of them are wrong, but you should figure out what works for you.

You could come up with it on the fly, typing like mad on your laptop until you take a step back, nod in approval, and go to bed. You might come up with something bold and new, something that came together out of the ether, just waiting for you to grab a hold of it.

Personally, I like to have some of it planned beforehand.

I come up with the basic idea of the story. I think about what genre I want to write and what kind of writing style I want to follow. Should it be written in the third person or the first? Will it be filled with action, a dash of romance, mixed in with something supernatural? Will it take place in a war? Are there zombies? I know there are in mine.

Second, I like to come up with a theme for the story. For me, the theme will be the central focus of the story. Everything that happens will revolve around this in some way becoming, in essence, the keystone that holds it all together. What's the message I want to send? It can be perseverance despite endless adversity. It can be about the innocence of a child that slowly fades away as he gains maturity through the course of the story.

After I let these thoughts stew for a while, I start to form the basic structure of the story. I try to come up with a beginning, middle, and an end. I like to come up with certain key events that will, and must, occur. These scenes are moments that need to be there to advance what's going on.

The fun part is coming up with the remaining 80%-90% of it on the fly. With the basic structure thought out and plotted, I let myself run free in this little playground I've created. So, in a way, I do write a lot of my stories on the go, but they always follow a certain structure, a certain plan.

I believe that plotting out every inch and detail of your novel can make the actual writing process a little stale. Writing fiction is about creating. With the basic plot laid out beforehand, you can spend the rest of the process having fun and filling in those gaps with the rest of the crazy ideas that might pop into your head. Good or bad.

Hopefully good.

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