Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for April, 2011

In fiction the main storyline is the central focus, but there may be secondary plots involved, too. These subplots can pertain to the main characters or minor characters, and may be entwined with the larger plot. For example, the hero may be running for political office while also dealing with his wife’s alcoholism. Or, the heroine may have a brother who is involved in illegal activities that she is unaware of but which eventually cause conflict she must deal with.

Subplots should support the main plot but also be able to stand alone, with a beginning, middle, and end of their own. They may run through the entire story, or be resolved earlier. Often they’ll merge with the main plot at the story’s climax.

Subplots can enhance a story in several ways:

  1. Create tension or conflict
  2. Develop characters
  3. Help resolve the story’s outcome
  4. Give the story added depth
  5. Reinforce the theme
  6. Introduce characters or conflict to be featured in a future book
  7. Affect the pacing

Often subplots are incorporated into a story by using multiple viewpoint characters in alternating chapters. For instance, in the romance genre the heroine’s viewpoint is generally the primary one but the hero’s viewpoint is also used, giving depth to both characters. In many suspense stories, the author will focus on the protagonist’s viewpoint but include chapters from secondary characters’ viewpoints in order to create tension by revealing events the main character isn’t aware of.

Short stories typically don’t have more than one or two subplots, if any. Novels will have several that are of varying importance to the main storyline, but all subplots should support the main plot rather than overshadow it.

  

Can you think of any ways using subplots can be detrimental to the story instead of enhancing it? How many subplots is too many?

 

Read Full Post »

Recently I received a book to review called Our Witchdoctors are too Weak. I posted my review as soon as I finished reading the book, just prior to getting an email asking me to post it during the first week of April as part of a virtual book tour. To make up for posting prematurely, I’m contributing to the tour by listing the other reviews for this book on my blog. If you’ve reviewed this book and are not listed here, let me know and I’ll add your site to the list.

I enjoyed this book, and admire the authors for their dedication to the Wilo tribe. Living in the Amazon in order to learn and record an unwritten language isn’t something I’d be willing or able to do, but I can and do encourage others to read about the authors’ experience.

If you’d like to know more about Davey and Marie Jank’s book, take a look at the reviews by: 

Carol Benedict

Valerie Comer

Carol J. Garvin

Tana Adams               

Sharon A. Lavy

 Jenn

Sue Harrison

Susan Panzica

Our Witchdoctors Are Too Weak: The Rebirth of an Amazon Tribe

Have you read this book? If so, what did you think about it?

Read Full Post »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 134 other followers

%d bloggers like this: