Intertwined Character and Plot

For a good story, character and plot must be intertwined. In other words, what does the character want? (Character) How does she go about getting that? (Plot) What goal does the character secretly want? (Character) How does he go about getting it? (Plot)

Even secondary characters must have motivations and purpose. If not, you must press that little old delete button. After revising my fantasy Star Opening about a dozen times over several years, I finally realized the main character’s brother had no reason to be in the story except for being an annoying little brother. He did not move the plot forward. Instead, he rather dragged on it. So after years of developing this boy, tending him, tweeking him, loving him, one afternoon I sat at the computer and read through the book with my finger on the delete key and he was g-o-n-e. Poof!

As hard as that was to do, how much harder would it be to delete a main character?

Intertwine your character’s thoughts, actions, emotions with the plot — not just what is happening around her, but every action done or thought or feeling she has to reach her goals.

3 thoughts on “Intertwined Character and Plot

  1. You’re welcome, Sharon. And you and me, both on the wishing to work faster. However, I’d be afraid what my speedy spidy web would look like.

  2. I love the part about how you just deleted the little brother character. It’s tough and easy, isn’t it? Tough to say goodbye to someone you’ve tweaked for so long but easy enough to hit delete. Great post

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s