There’s a secret behind writing a great story outline. It’s not as clear-cut as outlining what happens from opening to ending, but thoroughly exploring plot, character and the story.
A Story Outline is fundamental in establishing a solid foundation for writers to build their story.
It can only be crafted once the premise and concept have been fully analysed, genre and theme have been thoroughly researched, characters have been fully developed, and structural elements are in place.
All these components that unify a solid story need to be blended into the story outline. It is therefore essential to separate the plot, characters and story and craft:
- A Plot Outline
- A Character Outline
- A Story Outline
The Plot Outline follows the structural elements that build a story, focusing on the opening and ending of the story, the ordinary and extraordinary worlds, the new and dark worlds, the catalytic event (inciting incident) and climax, the dilemma and conclusion, and the midpoint.
The Character Outline focuses on the Primary Characters in the story: the Protagonist, Antagonist, Villain, and the Mentor /Guide, and explores the function of these characters in all the structural elements.
The Story Outline unifies the plot and characters, allowing the plot and the primary characters to serve the story.