How To Ensure Your Plot Is Intriguing

By on February 27, 2020

If you want to ensure that your book is a success, you need to understand what it is that keeps readers turning those pages. If you can get into the mindset of your reader and understand what will make your plot exciting and intriguing to them, you could be onto a winner.

A plot has many different elements. It's all about how your story unfolds, its twists and turns, its significant events and dramatic scenes, its hints at what's to come, its reflection on what has been. 

In short, a compelling plot is essential. So what can you do to ensure that yours is captivating? Read on to discover some useful tips.

Elaborate on your central ideas

To understand the difference between story and plot can be challenging. The story is like the bones of a person, and the plot is the flesh, blood, nerves veins. The story has lots of interconnecting parts that influence others; some play a more minor, and some a more major role. To help ensure your plot is intriguing, make sure that you make it as complicated and detailed and smart as the human body. Don't just write out the bare bones of your story, elaborate, make it come to life. 

Focus on suspense

A plot without any suspense or dramatic tension will be predictable and boring. Your readers need to feel suspenseful when reading your book; this will make them want to know what happens, enable them to react emotionally, and ensure that they aren't able to anticipate how the plot unfolds. If a reader second-guesses everything that happens, they won't enjoy your book as much as if you can surprise and delight them. Consider the different ways you can inject suspense into your novel - through secrets, unexpected arrivals, forbidden romances as so on. Your book doesn't have to be a suspense novel to use this device, and every good story will ensure that readers are full of anticipation and build up the suspense as they go. 

Double back to go forwards

If you want to engage your readers, it is a good idea to ensure that they understand the earlier events that have caused the protagonist and other characters to be where they are now. Backstory can help add depth to the story and characters, and you can do this by showing the origins of a character's earlier life or revealing past events that help the reader understand that things are not all that they seem.

Hint at what's to come

To make your plot more intriguing, you need to include various hints that forecast what will happen later. These little teasers will build anticipation, which is so important. You can do this by raising the stakes and hinting at what will happen if the protagonist fails, leaving a trail of clues that lead to a shock twist, or playing with the reader's emotions, by giving characters subtle traits that leave your readers feeling that they are not quite as they seem.

These are just some of the ways you can add interest to your plot. There are so many ways to connect your plot lines, to shake it up, and to add more energy and excitement to your story, and by following the above, you can ensure that your plot remains intriguing and carries the reader right to the very last page. 

bethany cadman
Bethany Cadman - bethanycadman.co.uk

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