Since a famous literary device, a plot twist, was used in a murder mystery story titled “The Three Apples” back in the 8th century, people have been putting them in their stories for thousands of years. Nowadays, readers will find plot twists strewn about inside countless pages of millions of books available worldwide. But why do we love plot twists so much?
The book Plot Twist, written by Donna Thompson, shows how effective the literary device we call plot twist is. She makes her readers stay on the edge of their seats as they read the book and unravel its mysteries. Her plot twists are nothing short of satisfying and are genuinely a must-read.
Let’s find tips on writing compelling plot twists that could help you write significant, surprising developments in your stories.
Brief Explanation of What Plot Twists Are
Plot twists are developments in a TV series, short story, novel, or movie that subvert the audience’s or reader’s expectations. You can imagine them as curve balls that don’t adhere to the linear path that could’ve been proposed by an author, director, or narrator at the beginning of the tale. If done correctly, these distractions could flabbergast readers or audiences, augmenting their engagement.
6 Different Forms of Plot Twists
Screenwriters and authors continually think of new methods to upend their storylines to make the next exceptional plot twist. Here are a couple of typical plot twists used in the world of storytelling:
1. Once the central conflict seems to have been resolved, an abrupt turn of events presents an additional issue to conquer.
2. A brand-new individual suddenly appears to alter the existing tale.
3. What was first believed to be an ally of the lead character turns out to be one of the antagonists.
4. A cutaway or flashback uncovers vital information that the readers and audience know, but the story’s characters don’t.
5. What was once considered a crucial story element is revealed to be a red herring, a lead or detail that is inconsequential when placed under a microscope.
6. A new chunk of detail uncovers that the tale’s narrator turns out to be an unreliable one.
In the book by Donna Thompson titled Plot Twist, she utilized some of these plot twist types in great succession without being obvious about it. Now, it’s time to find out essential tips on writing compelling plot twists.
Tips On Writing Compelling Plot Twists for Everyone Can Use
Regardless if it’s your first time attempting to pen a successful plot twist or if it’s the hundredth time, here are a couple of writing tips to aid in inspiring you:
• Promote an Ostensibly Minor Character – An excellent way to devise a great twist is to create an ostensibly frivolous character into a much more crucial figure. Maybe a janitor seen primarily in the background is the serial killer the detective is looking for.
• Guarantee that the Plot Twist is Deserved – Plot twists are great, but if they are done in a way that isn’t grounded within the tale you’ve established, they lose all credibility and greatness. Be sure to utilize careful foreshadowing to correctly set the stage for the plot twist you wish to reveal.
• Make Seemingly Valuable Characters Perish – If you’re looking for a great way to capture your audience’s or reader’s attention, then set up a figure who looks like someone important and make them perish around 1/5th into the story.
• Allow Your Characters to Come Upon a Plot Twist Naturally – Instead of describing a significant plot twist via narration, it’s better to let your characters discover it. Maybe they just found out that the person they thought they could trust turns out to be their arch nemesis, for example.
• Have the Big Plot Twist Provoke an Unexpected Ending – If you decide to put your big plot twist in the end, make it create a new consequence or issue that your protagonist needs to resolve.
There you have it, folks, some helpful tips on writing compelling plot twists. If you need a good book as a reference, get Plot Twist by Donna Thompson and observe how she masterfully weaves in twist after twist in this fantastic tale!