Saturday, March 25, 2023

Plot Development Technique

Scott Myers’ Screenwriting Tip: Index Cards
Nights are made for sleeping, but sometimes I have insomnia. And I’m making the best of it. During those middle-of-the-night wakeful periods, I work on the plot for my cozy mystery.

After publishing two detective mysteries with simplistic plots and writing a draft for a third detective story with a two-pronged plot, I’m beginning to learn how to create storylines with more complexity.

The main character in the ‘Murder at Binkley House’ cozy mystery is first-personing her way through the plot’s crimes. Things are happening to and around her. The more she digs, the more she puts herself – and her best friend – in danger.

After enhancing the plot with clues and red herrings pointing to multiple suspects, the order of the plot elements was harder to keep track of.

I bought a pack of index cards and wrote one clue, red herring, or plot point on each color-coded card. Now I can shuffle the cards as I experiment with plot order.