From an Idea to a Plot

A talk by Michael Noltemeyer
Lecturer, Loyola Marymount University

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About this talk

How do you take an idea for a story and build it into a plot? When do you know you have a real idea that is worth developing -- and what elements might need to be in place before you start writing? How do you decide which angle or point of view to explore your idea with? And what is the role of formal plotting structures and techniques at this early, vulnerable stage?

In this exploratory, slow-paced session, writing partners and friends Michael Noltemeyer and Daniel David Wallace discuss a new idea for a story that Daniel is cooking up, inspired in part by a recent case of cheating in chess. Daniel presents his sources of inspiration to Michael for the first time and they seek out the core elements of what the story is about.

In addition, Michael deploys Daniel's own plotting methods (the "ABC plot" and the "Five Ones") to help focus the shape of the story forming in front of them.

If you haven't seen Michael speak before, you will be amazed by his supportive, insightful, meticulous attention to another writer's vision.

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