02 February 2009

Plot Consultations for Writers

I always disguise the identity of the writer when I unwind here and reflect after a plot consultation. I keep my comments general in hopes of showing how universal most of the plots and the plights I encounter.

In my mind, I already see the writer successful and imagine how notes like these would shed a certain sense of historical perspective when the time of success truly arrives.

Today's consultation was all about subplots and themes.

Every element in a memoir, novel, screenplay contributes to the greater thematic significance of a story. 
  • Every character functions like a mirror shining back to the protagonist the very elements of themselves they can see in others but not in themselves
  • Every subplot does the same thing to the overall plot of the story 
  • Every word contributes to the theme and mood and nuance
Nothing is extraneous or there simply because the language is beautiful, the action clever, the character quirky. Every element contributes to the deeper meaning of the piece.

Do you know the thematic significance of your story?

Can you condense the overall meaning of your story into one statement?

This Thematic Significance statement reflects the truth of your story. Not the necessarily a universal truth or truth for all time, but true for your story itself.