After the Skype meeting with Sandra (my mentor from Cornerstones Literary Consultancy), my mind was buzzing with ideas about how to firm up the plot. I spent the next couple of days lost in Gavin’s world thinking about how the various characters would behave and react in the different scenarios which we had discussed. As I went about my day, took a couple of long walks, cut the grass, and cleaned the house… in fact, all the time… Gavin, Granny, Gizmo, Auntie Deborah and The Roaster roamed around my head. I had so many ideas it was hard to know which way to turn.

I have to admit that at one point I felt totally overwhelmed by it.

Then, my many years as a Primary School teacher led me to the solution. I got a piece of sting and strung it up in my little writing room. Then I literally pegged out the key features of a three act story:


  • The Set-up
  • The Inciting Event


  • At least three conflicts and attempts to overcome them
  • The high point
  • Rug-pulling moment
  • The hero’s darkest hour


  • Climax
  • Resolution

After this, I wrote down my plot onto bits of paper, bearing in mind the cause and effect of each scene. I pegged each piece of paper onto the appropriate section along my sting. This enabled me to swap and change things around until I felt that the plot worked.

Have you tried doing this or something similar? Please comment below.

Before doing this, my previous draft had a similar story but lacked clear progression and structure. Now I feel that the tension rises and that the stakes are higher. I have also simplified some areas of the story which were unnecessarily overly complicated.

Having done all this, I have now written the story out as a long synopsis (6 pages) and sent it to Sandra. Hopefully, I have addressed the main weaknesses in the plot, but I’ll wait to see that she thinks.


Plot for IGD pegged on line June 2017
Pegged out Plot

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