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Why Using the Ten-Scene Chart Will Give Your Novel a Solid Framework

Let’s jump right into this week’s contribution to our look at the ten key scenes you need in your novel. We’ve been spending a lot of weeks delving into my 10-20-30 Scene Builder Concept, and we’ve looked at what those first ten scenes are that provide the framework for a solid story.

I also showed you how you can layer in the next ten scenes with a subplot or a romance plot. This layering of ten scenes can be done with any genre and any POV structure. Just know this: if you don’t have your foundational scenes in place, and in the right place, your novel may collapse.

While every novel is different, notwithstanding genre, those that align closest to strong, expected, tried-and-true novel structure usually have the better story. Readers expect novels to follow a certain structure (though they may never realize it). It’s what they’re used to.

And times have changed, in that back in the day novels used to ramble for hundreds of pages with backstory and narrative. But that’s not acceptable to today’s readers, who are used to watching movies and TV shows. Continue Reading…

An Example of a Suspense Thriller’s 10 Key Scenes

We’re taking a long, hard look at those ten foundational scenes for your novel, and I’m sharing examples submitted by readers of Live Write Thrive—all to show you that you can do this (and should!). While it does take some time and thought, you owe it to yourself and your readers to set up a strong foundation for your novel by working out these key scenes before you start writing.

And if you’ve already written some or all of your first draft, there is no better way to ensure you’ve nailed your foundation than to plug in the scenes you have into the chart. If you find you can’t come up with the scenes and in the proper spots in your story, you may be missing something crucial. It could be your structure is seriously flawed and your story will collapse.

Don’t spend months of your life struggling over your story’s plot and end up with a mess! Take the time to work up a solid story. For the clearest and best way to take your idea and fashion it into a best seller, get my books The 12 Key Pillars of Novel Construction and the workbook!

These books lay out, step by step, how to come up with a killer concept, how to develop strong, empathetic characters, how to generate high stakes and huge conflict, and how to mine the themes that will hold your story together. Continue Reading…

Nailing That Ten-Scene Foundation for Your Novel

Over the last month or two, we’ve been looking at the ten key foundational scenes you need for your novel. I shared a couple of examples of what these scenes might look like, and you could take just about any best seller and pencil in those ten key scenes and note how they are in just the right place.

I sent out a call for writers to create a chart of their published novel’s ten key scenes. Many took me up on this, and all said it was both fun and challenging. So over the next few weeks, I’m going to show you just how helpful and easy this can be—by sharing these charts submitted by published authors that follow Live Write Thrive.

I’d like to challenge all of you to lay out your scenes using this chart—whether you are just brainstorming your novel idea or have already written or published it. Doing this will save you perhaps weeks or months of time as you struggle to figure out how to tell your great story. Continue Reading…