Tag Archive - Four Corner Pillars of Novel Construction

Kicking High Concept into High Gear

We’ve been exploring the first key pillar of novel construction—concept with a kicker. Last week I explained that a novel has to have an overarching concept with a unique, compelling kicker. But this is not to be confused with a plot twist or surprise, which is a kicker in its own right. But not the kind of kicker I’m talking about. A novel or movie has to stand on a strong pillar of concept all the way through. It can’t depend on one high moment in the story—regardless of placement in the plot—to support the “structure.”

If you’ve read the previous posts, I hope you are now getting a bit clearer about this concept of concept. Let’s take this a step further. Continue Reading…

Coming Up with a Kicker of a Concept

We’re taking a close look in these first posts on novel construction at the four main corner pillars. To recap briefly, I’m introducing twelve key pillars writers must construct to build a great novel in any genre. The corner pillars are not only the most important, they must work together, and my experience has shown me that if I work on all four of these pillars at one time, fleshing them in bit by bit until they are solid, I can be satisfied that the framework of my “house” will hold up.

After those four are in place, the other eight can be developed and fashioned to fit into the framework. Just as when building a house, tasks need to be done in order. You can’t put on the roof or wire the house if you haven’t put up walls. And walls can’t go up without appropriate framework. Continue Reading…

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