An inciting incident is an event that compels your hero to act, forcing them to do something. It’s is a catalyst of events in a story. Before the inciting incident, your protagonist lives an ordinary or normal life. After the inciting incident, nothing is the same for your protagonist.
The inciting incident is very important in a story. If nothing happens to your hero, you don’t have a story. Your incident could be negative. For instance, the son of your hero died in a fatal accident. It could also be positive. For instance, your hero won EUR4 million in the lotto.
Inciting incident happens in two main ways: choice and accident. The protagonist might decide to move to a new house, buy five dogs, or adopt a child. All of these incidents will force the protagonist to take action.
If an inciting incident is not by choice, it can happen as an accident. The protagonist meets his old friend in a theatre. The fierce dog stands on protagonist’s way and refuses to leave.
No matter whether the incident happens by accident or choice, it should be included in the first quarter of the story. If the incident comes later than that, readers get bored and wonder when your tale is going to start.
A playwright involves actions and drama in their writing. If you want to join the ranks of Arthur Miller, Ibsen and Shakespeare, you need to work with language and characters to develop a story that is meant to be performed in a theatre. With great writing and good vison, you will experience the thrill of seeing your play performed. The following tips will help you to develop an amazing play:
Watch and Read plays
The first step in writing plays is to know the form. Play writers not only read plays but also see them performed. This is important if you want to write plays that work on the stage.
To get ideas for your story, start with characters. Your character may be based on real people that you know. What is the name of your characters? What kind of jobs and homes do you imagine for them? What problems are they trying to solve? Writing character profiles will help envisage your characters more fully.
Have a Conflict
Your story should have a conflict. You need to give your characters problems that they need to solve. The life of your character should never be perfect. Happiness is nice to experience, but boring to watch.
Have a good beginning point.
What is the best point to start writing? Do not start a play with the climax, or else your audience will be lost. Have an interesting beginning point that creates suspense.
Knowing how to set a scene is very important for creative writing. Scenes are the building blocks that make a plot and the falling and rising action of a story. But how do you make a scene and ensure it works towards writing an interesting story? Here are some tips that will help you set your scene when creating a story:
The main location should be described in detail. Draw a plan of the location using all the main landmarks.
Thoroughly describe where the characters in your story live, including rooms and objects. Also mention where your character’s belongings came from, and if possible, the memory evoked by each.
Using all the senses (colour, touch, sound, taste and smell), write a descriptive passage.
Main activities of your characters should be described in detail. Your readers should know your characters’ actions such as showering, bathing, drying hair, washing and playing. Always remember to use strong verbs while describing actions.
To mark the passage of time, describe the seasons and weather in your story.
To create suspense in a scene, use anticipation of a coming summer or spring, or of a coming calm or storm.
Describe your characters’ hidden fears or desires
When it comes to writing and books, there are endless guides that can teach you what to do. Many books have found their way onto writers’ shelves. However, there are some specific books you should pull out time and time again. In my opinion, the following are among the best books that a writer can have:
The Situation and the Story: The Art of Personal Narrative by Vivian Gornick
1. How do writers turn the boring truth of their life into creative stories worth telling? How do writers perfect the art of creative writing? How do writers tell stories based on their personal experience? Vivian Gornick’s book does just that.
2. On Writing Well by William Zinsser
Have you ever met a writing bible for nonfiction? On Writing Well is the bible. Organized around method, principles, attitudes, and forms, William manages to guide writers through every step in the writing process.
3. Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg
Natalie is dedicated to writing practice. She bases her model on the Zen study of the mind. With such study, writers are allowed to ask themselves small and big questions that definitely improve their writing.
4. What if? Pamela Painter and Anne Bernays
With over 25 years of teaching creative writing, Bernays and Painter have written a fiction guide for would-be writers. The book is full of writing exercises. They aim is to see people to thinking and acting as writes.