Plotting Quotes

Quotes tagged as "plotting" Showing 1-27 of 27
Kiersten White
“The last time she was up here, she had been... staring up at the sky and dreaming of stars. Now, she looked down and plotted flames.”
Kiersten White, And I Darken

Winston Churchill
“Plans are of little importance, but planning is essential.”
Winston Churchill

Bernard Knox
“If through no fault of his own the hero is crushed by a bulldozer in Act II, we are not impressed. Even though life is often like this—the absconding cashier on his way to Nicaragua is killed in a collision at the airport, the prominent statesman dies of a stroke in the midst of the negotiations he has spent years to bring about, the young lovers are drowned in a boating accident the day before their marriage—such events, the warp and woof of everyday life, seem irrelevant, meaningless. They are crude, undigested, unpurged bits of reality—to draw a metaphor from the late J. Edgar Hoover, they are “raw files.” But it is the function of great art to purge and give meaning to human suffering, and so we expect that if the hero is indeed crushed by a bulldozer in Act II there will be some reason for it, and not just some reason but a good one, one which makes sense in terms of the hero’s personality and action. In fact, we expect to be shown that he is in some way responsible for what happens to him.”
Bernard Knox, The Oedipus Cycle: Oedipus Rex, Oedipus at Colonus, Antigone

George R.R. Martin
“I love the juice but I loathe sticky fingers. Clean hands, Sansa. Whatever you do, make certain your hands are clean.”
George R.R. Martin, A Storm of Swords

Connie Willis
“I learned everything I know about plot from Dame Agatha (Christie).”
Connie Willis, The Winds of Marble Arch and Other Stories

Aristotle
“A beginning is that which does not itself follow anything by causal necessity, but after which something naturally is or comes to be. An end, on the contrary, is that which itself naturally follows some other thing, either by necessity, or as a rule, but has nothing following it. A middle is that which follows something as some other thing follows it. A well constructed plot, therefore, must neither begin nor end at haphazard, but conform to these principles.”
Aristotle, Poetics

Ray Bradbury
“Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations. Plot is observed after the fact rather than before. It cannot precede action. It is the chart that remains when an action
is through. That is all Plot ever should be. It is human desire let
run, running, and reaching a goal. It cannot be mechanical. It can
only be dynamic. So, stand aside, forget targets, let the characters, your fingers, body, blood, and heart do.”
Ray Bradbury

Stephen King
“Of course, the writer can impose control; It's just a really shitty idea. Writing controlled fiction is called "plotting." Buckling your seatbelt and letting the story take over, however... that is called "storytelling." Storytelling is as natural as breathing; plotting is the literary version of artificial respiration.”
Stephen King

Michael Ben Zehabe
“Father, too, is a contradiction. The least heralded physician in Noshahr, a father too busy healing others to notice his daughters' broken hearts. Not exactly true. I'm sure he notices. He just doesn't know what to do, and I don't know how to ask. So, here we are: him locking me in and me plotting my escape.”
Michael Benzehabe, Persianality

S.F. Chandler
“When you fear nothing, you have nothing to fear”
S.F. Chandler, We The Great Are Misthought

Dean Koontz
“We've only been sitting here forty minutes. I'm never at the morning table less than an hour and a half. I do some of my finest plotting over breakfast coffee and raisin brioche.”
Dean Koontz, Forever Odd

Aaron Allston
“When all else fails, complicate matters.”
Aaron Allston

“On THE AMBER SPYGLASS:

"If this plotline was a motorist, it would have been arrested for driving while intoxicated, if it had not perished in the horrible drunk accident where it went headlong over the cliff of the author's preachy message, tumbled down the rocky hillside, crashed, and burned.”
John C. Wright, Transhuman and Subhuman: Essays on Science Fiction and Awful Truth

Dorothy L. Sayers
“Persons curious in chronology may, if they like, work out from what they already know of the Wimsey family that the action of the book takes place in 1935; but if they do, they must not be querulously indignant because the King's Jubilee is not mentioned, or because I have arranged the weather and the moon's changes to suit my own fancy. For, however realistic the background, the novelist's only native country is Cloud-Cuckooland, where they do but jest, poison in jest: no offence in the world.”
Dorothy L. Sayers, Gaudy Night

Don DeLillo
“All plots tend to move deathward. This is the nature of plots. Political plots, terrorist plots, lovers’ plots, narrative plots, plots that are part of children’s games. We edge nearer death every time we plot. It is like a contract that all must sign, the plotters as well as those who are the targets of the plot.”
Don DeLillo, White Noise

“Imagine the same scene in HAMLET if Pullman had written it. Hamlet, using a mystic pearl, places the poison in the cup to kill Claudius. We are all told Claudius will die by drinking the cup. Then Claudius dies choking on a chicken bone at lunch. Then the Queen dies when Horatio shows her the magical Mirror of Death. This mirror appears in no previous scene, nor is it explained why it exists. Then Ophelia summons up the Ghost from Act One and kills it, while she makes a speech denouncing the evils of religion. Ophelia and Hamlet are parted, as it is revealed in the last act that a curse will befall them if they do not part ways.”
John C. Wright, Transhuman and Subhuman: Essays on Science Fiction and Awful Truth

Dawn Klehr
“Revenge, I've come to learn, is not impulsive, or reactionary, or blind. It's calculating, patient, and observant. And if it's going to work- the timing must be perfect.”
Dawn Klehr, If You Wrong Us

Susanna Kaysen
“She wasn't blotto, she was plotting.”
Susanna Kaysen, Girl, Interrupted

Trevor Cole
“To live, fiction must be read, and to be read it must be enjoyed. Why do so many people talk about the number of times they’ve lost interest in a book after a couple of chapters, or only “toughed it out” to the end out of a sense of obligation? I’d say it’s because too many writers have forgotten that the writer’s job isn’t merely to express himself, it’s to reach a reader. That doesn’t mean pandering to the lowest common denominator. But it does mean that even a work of smart, thoughtful fiction should strive to engage and entertain. If you’re a writer of literary fiction and all you’re bringing to the party is a poetic turn of phrase or a deep thought, that’s not enough. What about pace? Humour? Characters you care about and a smattering of suspense that makes you want to “find out what happens next?” All of these, plus rich language, bracing honesty and emotional resonance, should be components of the best, most thoughtful fiction. Because that’s the sort of reading experience that readers should be able to expect from a novel that demands hours of their time.”
Trevor Cole

E.A. Bucchianeri
“Demonic spirits never sleep or take a vacation, always plotting and waiting for the next offensive.”
E.A. Bucchianeri, Vocation of a Gadfly

“Plotting is an organic, and wildly inefficient process of trial and error.”
James Hynes, Writing Great Fiction: Storytelling Tips and Techniques

Amit Abraham
“Give a smile to your enemies and they will go mad wondering what you are plotting against them.”
Amit Abraham

Patrick Marber
“The trite answer is that everything is true but none of it happened. It is emotionally true, but the events, the plotting, the narrative, isn’t true of my life, though I’ve experienced most of the emotions experienced by the characters in the play.”
Patrick Marber

Michelle C. Hillstrom
“Other people dream while they are asleep. I plot new book ideas.”
Michelle C. Hillstrom

Nicole Gozdek
“Plotten ist wie Puzzeln. Manchmal hat man das Gesamtbild und muss versuchen, die zahlreichen Teile passend zusammenzusetzen. Und manchmal hat man nur kleine Blöcke an Einzelteilen und muss versuchen, aus ihnen ein stimmiges Gesamtbild zusammenzusetzen.”
Nicole Gozdek

E.A. Bucchianeri
“Plot and plan like all good generals.”
E.A. Bucchianeri, Vocation of a Gadfly

Caitlín R. Kiernan
“I don't judge a scene or a line of dialog by whether or not it advances the plot, for example. Imagine an edit of Tarantino's Pulp Fiction wherein only dialog that advances the plot was allowed to remain. I don't obsess over the balance of conflict and interaction. I don't generally fret over the possibility that something I do may cause some reader to experience a "disconnect" (what an odious metaphor). I don't think in dramatic arcs. I don't spend a lot of time wondering if the plot is getting lost in description and conversation. To me, this all seems like a wealth of tedious confusion being introduced into an act that ought to be instinctive, natural, intuitive. I want to say, stop thinking about all that stuff and just write the story you have to tell. Let the story show you how it needs you to write it. I don't try to imagine how the reader will react to X or if maybe A, B, and C should have happened by page R. It's not that I don't want the story to be read. I desire readers as much as anyone. But I desire readers who want to read what I'm writing, not readers who approach fiction with so many expectations that they're constantly second-guessing and critiquing the author's every move, book in one hand, some workshop checklist in the other, and a stopwatch on the desk before them. If writing or reading like this seems to work for you, fine. I mean, I've always said that when you find something that works, stick with it. But, for me, it seems as though such an anal approach to creating any art would bleed from it any spark of enjoyment on the part of the artist (not to mention the audience). It also feels like an attempt to side-step the nasty issue of talent, as if we can all write equally well if we only follow the rules, because, you know, good writing is really 99% craft, not inexplicable, inconvenient, unquantifiable talent.”
Caitlín R. Kiernan