Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Plot Twists

You ever have a beautiful story planned out in your head? And, then, you realize the one-thousand-and-one ways you could make it different? 

Maybe your adventurers are simply going to take a pleasant boat ride to the lighthouse island for a picnic. That's your plan anyway. But who says man-eating sharks can't surround the vessel? Maybe a storm blows up. Maybe the pleasant lighthouse has been hijacked by stranded pirates. 

You see, we often think we have the story down in our minds. But, truth is, we often only have the skeleton. There are a thousand plot twists we could make, but sometimes tunnel-vision on our original perfect plan keeps those exciting twists from happening.

Why not make something ordinary into something original? 

Train trip to visit Aunt Lucy = near-disaster after the bridge is washed out.
Sunday picnic = a frantic race from angry honey bees.
Boring day at the office = insane robber mistakes the filing cabinets for the safe.
Girl goes to Starbucks = the barista dropping a steaming americano into her purse.

Ordinary can become extraordinary. You just have to see beyond your perfect plot and throw a few twists in.

Alicia A. Willis is a home-school graduate, published author, and avid historian. She is a firm believer in the principle that one can accomplish anything by substantial amounts of prayer and coffee. Visit her at her blog or Facebook to view her historical-fiction novels and all the goings-on between writing!


  1. Thanks Alicia for sharing this! It's really something I need to put into practice with my stories.

  2. Egh. I just started a book and was a little surprised when a MC shot someone, but it really wasnt a big deal.

    The character was all like "Oh I'm scared" and the MC was all like "Would you please turn so I can more directly hit your heart, dear sir?" and then the book moved on like it was no biggie. :( So disappointing, I wanted blood and guts and regret and revenge.

    What I'm getting at is: We need more action and heartbreak in books, dont we?!?!?!?

    1. Hahahaha! Oh, my. You are funny. Hey, it happens. Characters die without you intending it. But, at the same time, plots twists CAN involve good things. Going back to my example, maybe the barista marries the girl after dropping a coffee in her purse...

      The way I heard it from a famous writer... "Get your characters into the worst possible predicament you can, then figure out how to get 'em out!"


Thank you for contacting us!