What Is Plot Structure and Why Is It Important?

If you are going to write any type of story, it is important that you know how to utilize story structure. The more effectively you use plot structure, the more well-written your story will be. A story without a plot structure is not a story at all.

They will merely be a series of events that have no cohesion. What is plot structure though? What is its importance? How do you use it in your writing process? This article means to define plot structure and its key importance in the writing process.

What is plot structure?

The structure of a plot or plot structure is the sequence of events in a story. Throughout the sequence of the story, the reader will be able to learn about the characters, events, setting, and theme of the story. By using a systematic plot structure throughout the writing process, you will be able to create clearer and more cohesive stories.

What are its main uses?

The plot structure is meant to give form and cohesion to a story. First and foremost, the plot structure is meant to present the story to the reader. The plot is also meant to move the story forward and give order to the sequence of events within the story. Overall, the plot structure acts as the backbone of the story.

4 Types of plot structure

1. Linear plot

This type of plot structure is very straightforward and usually takes place chronologically. If you are going to use the linear story structure, you should utilize six key elements of the story. These parts are exposition, conflict, rising action, climax, falling action, and resolution. The exposition is the part where key elements of the story are introduced to the reader. This includes the characters, settings, and themes.

The conflict is the turning point in the story. This could include the introduction of the antagonist or the rise of an obstacle that the protagonist will face. The rising action is the lead-up to the climax. It is usually the longest part of the story where the most events happen.

The climax is the highest point of the story and is where the tensions and issues within the story are resolved. After the climax, the falling action part of the story will help to relieve the tensions in the story and will signal the resolution of the story.

The resolution is the part where all the conflicts of the story are resolved. During the resolution, all the loose ends of the story will be addressed. The main use of the resolution is to give the readers a satisfying ending.

2. Episodic plot

This kind of plot structure uses a chronological structure in order to tell the story. The main characteristic of this plot structure is that it uses various characters to perceive different events in the story.

By using the episodic plot structure, you will be able to expound on your story more effectively. This is best used in novels because you could create multiple characters, and address various aspects of the story through their perspective.

3. Parallel plot

The parallel plot structure enables the writer to weave two or more plot points in a story. If you are going to utilize this plot structure, you should write multiple plot points, and have their progress separately.

The various plot points should only meet at the climax of the story. By using the parallel plot structure, you could create a more emotionally charged storyline because it will allow you to write from various viewpoints, and utilize multiple rising actions and climaxes.

However, you should be careful in writing your multiple plots. You don’t want them to get too convoluted, and confuse your readers.

4. Flashback plot

This plot structure utilizes irregular timelines to create a more coherent story. If you are going to use the flashback plot structure, you could start at the middle story and use flashbacks to further expound on the story.

You should make sure to write your flashbacks in the most detailed way possible. You could also use multiple flashbacks, just as long as they add substance to your overall plot structure.

When it comes to writing a great story, it is very important that you know how to use various plot structures. By utilizing plot points, you will be able to create clear and cohesive stories. With this article, you’ll know how to use the different types of plot structures in the most effective way possible.

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