Pause for a plotline

At this point I need to take a break from worrying about characters and start thinking about plot.  Part of the appeal of the topic I’ve chosen is that I love the idea of special powers, and I wonder what it would be like to discover you had them.  The whole “we save the world but we still have homework to do” routine.  The whole “can’t let anyone outside the group know our secret” kind of thing.  But that’s not enough by itself. You also need to have some sort of conflict there, something that they need to do along the way.  One thing that irritated me about a particular set of books is that they never had a chance to settle to “normal” life, because in every book they faced a major challenge that threw them into disarray and this didn’t get resolved until the end of the book, but I guess that’s what plot is about, there’s no plot without conflict.

On the other hand, you get books like the Animorphs series, that tells the same basic story in each book and doesn’t really move the plotline along that fast, so there’s still a sense of normality in their behaviour.

I know I want to have a tightly plotted book, where everything fits into place.  This means there has to be a real conflict, where the kids have to fight a real danger.  And since I want them to stay hidden, it needs to be the sort of danger that no-one else knows about.  Which I guess means that aliens landing on Canterbury Cathedral are out 😉

So, do they get their powers from an alien who’s interfering?  Is he aware of a danger coming to the world that someone needs to fight against?  If so, what is it?

How far out do I go?  Do we have aliens invading?  Are they subtle?  Are they openly accepted as friendly while really working their way into society to destroy it from within?  Or is the enemy more subtle?  Or maybe the enemy is part of us, a secret society who are fighting against a real or imaginary enemy by using any weapon they can find, including kids with special powers?

Too many questions and not enough answers at the moment.  I think I need to consider this further.  At least I’m not aiming for a bestseller here, I’m just aiming at enough of a story to keep myself entertained.  Which doesn’t mean I don’t have a tough, critical audience, of course.


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1 Comment

  1. I hate plot, give me characters any day 😉

    Good luck!



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