In Depth #6

With In Depth slowly coming to a close, I wanted to say how happy I am for my mentor. We’ve had 9 meetings together with a few more planned before In Depth Night. My latest meeting with my mentor was on Thursday, May 2 from 4:00pm – 5:00pm.

List of Concepts:

  • Scaffolding
    • A basic/vague idea of a novel/plot
  • Plot Points
    • Set up, Opening, Catalyst, Debate, B Story, Midpoint, All is Lost, Finale, etc.
  • Obstacle vs. Complication
    • Obstacle: Gets in the way of your goal
    • Complication: Creates change
  • Character Arc
    • A change your character goes through over the course of the story
  • Pacing
    • General pacing of the plot, action, and character dynamic
  • Plotting techniques
    • Save the Cat Plot Points, Scaffolding, Summary, etc.


My mentor has offered me alternative ways to write a scene, suggestions on edits and plot points, and feedback involving my writing and process. Some of these alternatives have included notes on keeping the scene more clear, different endings and parts of my scene that a) make sense or b) is a good idea to keep in mind, and tips on how to deal with multiple characters in one scene, just as taking some out or leaving them more two-dimensional as to not draw the focus too far away from the main character(s).

Another mentor might not have given me so in-tune or finite alternatives, as my mentor is extremely caring and has a similar style of story planning as me. Instead, the process and steps I went through to reach this point of my novel (save the cat plot points, developmental questions, the emotional wound thesaurus, etc.) would be different, as every writer have different strategies and use different tools. For example, my mentor last year used more worksheets and TED-ED videos for teaching and plotting. While that method was not bad and works very well, the process I went through with Leslie worked better for my style. I was able to clearly put my ideas out in a written form, working my way around world/character/plot building along the way. The amount of work I had to do before I could actually start writing forced me to really plan ahead, and I am less inclined to get stuck not knowing what to write.

Learning Centre:

My learning centre is going to showcase my process step by step. Similar to a timeline, I want to show how I transitioned from plot pointing to one sentence summary to developmental questions to identifying characters to deep emotional wounds to scene outlining and finally scene writing. I’m going to print out my work as examples, and I will focus on the step and not the detail I put into the step for my writing. I want to be able to teach/show others a process to writing and show how detailed and complicated it is while at the same time giving some food for thought in the form of tools people can use. In addition, my main focus (other than the process) will be the scenes I’ve written for my novel. I have an opening scene, a scene around the middle of the novel, and an ending scene. Similar to last year, I will read out some of my writing, cutting an edited version as to not take up too much time. I will interact with the ‘audience’ by explaining my process and reading out my writing.

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