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OF DOUGHNUT HOLES AND PLOT…
Did you know that the hole in the middle of a doughnut was invented by a teenager? Seriously, why does that surprise us? Teenagers like things different than they are, if just to be obstinate sometimes.
In 1847, a sixteen-year-old-sailor was claimed to have invented the hole in the middle of a doughnut. Hanson Gregory was tired of biting into the middle of the doughnut and finding it under-cooked and greasy. He began cutting the middle out of his doughnuts.
When he came back from sailing, he told his mother about the recipe. The rest is history. After all, what mom doesn’t try to make her son’s food his favorite way?
The doughnut hole turned out to be a pretty good idea, but plot holes? That is an entirely different story. Plot holes can get a manuscript turned away quicker than you can say, “Doughnut.”
5 Tips To Filling Plot Holes:
1. Read each character’s POV scenes at one time, excluding all other POV scenes. This will tell you if their character journey has any plot holes. To find out more about character journey check out the archives at My Book Therapy.
2. Make a story timeline or grid of some kind. This is valuable even for the pantser because you can use it as a tool to help you in editing scenes. Once you have this timeline you can look to see if the progression of the plot makes sense. Some writer’s find Scrivner helpful for this type of activity.
3. Analyze your timeline to determine if all of the elements of Story Spine or Structure are there. (I’ve linked this to a fabulous chat with Susan May Warren’s My Book Therapy where I’ve learned a lot of what I know about story structure.)
4. As you complete steps one through three, make a detailed list of things that need to be addressed. Don’t stop at that moment to fix each one, or you might miss the benefit of doing an overall read. After you have finished each component you can go back and do the edits. You may find that some of the holes in your plot overlap.
5. Get a fresh reader to read through your book before submitting it to make sure nothing is confusing. Sometimes we get so close to our stories that we can’t see them anymore. It is often helpful to have someone new look at it.
I’m off to have a glazed doughnut. What is your favorite kind of doughnut?