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Screen & Stage
In this article, I will incorporate a fictional script layout of examples from my own work for you to follow. Each step is called a "plot pillar," and each one ought to vary in intensity, gradually building a complex but enthralling story.
A) In the beginning, page one, you introduce your Protagonist, setting him in his world – symbolically invoke the appropriate atmosphere, and provide something that gives him a rub, friction in his life, by revealing what the Protagonist is willing to accept or not accept.
B) Moving on, the Protagonist's allies are introduced. These are characters that might be instrumental later on with helping the Protagonist, or they define him further. How they interact will set the mood. These additional characters will provide the mood, foreshadowing, and context I want to set up for the action to come later.
The foreshadowing will show that Nina worked for a secret military research project during Soviet times.
C) Next comes the adventure. This involves some planning, or event, that will cause our Protagonist to have to enter the Antagonist's world.
D) A new ally appears. This can be someone who gives advice, helps in resolving the major issue of the story, or who appears from time to time in carrying along the story thread.
E) Now comes the Point of Attack (POA). The Protagonist can witness or experience something that will challenge the protagonist's character. This can be a sufficient gain or loss.
This brings about the second portion of the POA: Reaction and response from our Protagonist. This scene is written with intensity, so the audience starts to enjoy the roller coaster ride, which is vitally important for a suspense thriller.
F) In the next plot point, the Protagonist is now committed to the Antagonist's world. This is called "crossing the threshold" and the Antagonist's allies appear. At this stage, the Antagonist's motives ought to be revealed, thought the Antagonist is not exposed.
It is crucial that you have a transformation arc between Act I and Act II, because this is the turning point of the story. The plot doesn't change here, but continues with emphasis on location.
G) The Antagonist's allies test the Protagonist to start the learning process, providing the character arc for the Protagonist to start shifting.
H) The Antagonist's motives appear. Finally, the push and pull and challenges facing the Protagonist are put directly in front of the Antagonist's plot.
I) The Protagonist's crisis has finally come. This ought to be the near-triumph point for the Antagonist.
Now it's your turn to write out your own storyline using this format. In Part II, you'll bring it all to a nice resolve.
The script example, TETRIS, is proprietary property of the author.
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