Magnificent Seven Plot Points

The next story structure is from Dave Trottier and his website is www.keepwriting.com. His article can be found at https://www.keepwriting.com/tsc/magnificent7plotpoints.htm.

Trottier’s structure is similar to the Seven Point Story Structure, but Trottier uses a few different terms and adds two new ones.

Backstory: Trottier, adds backstory to his structure which appears before the beginning of the story. This includes characters’ backgrounds, history, world building, and other items that may or may not make its way into the actual story. Backstory help you keep the characters in character, the story on track and consistency to places and events. You don’t need too much detail to your background, but it should be enough to keep track of everything.

Catalyst: Trottier uses catalyst instead of hook. It serves the same purpose and is in the same place as the hook.

Big Event: Is the same as First Plot Point, Trottier just uses a different name.

Pinch Points: Trottier leaves out Pinch Points in his structure.

Midpoint: Same as in the Seven Point Story Structure.

Crisis: Trottier uses Crisis for the Third Plot Point, the gateway between Act I and Act II.

Climax / Showdown: Trottier adds something new that we haven’t see so far called the climax/showdown. I placed this at the 91% to 92% position, but it can start earlier and extend to the end of the story, although I feel it shouldn’t extend over the resolution. If you’re writing a story that ends with the climax, then you can extend it to the end of the story –personally I suggest a resolution to tie up loose ends for your reader.

Realization: Again, Trottier uses Realization instead of Resolution. They are the same and serve the same function, tying up loose ends and giving the reader a satisfying ending to the story.

William Bernhardt Structure

New up is William Bernhardt and he uses a structure closer to the Seven Point Story Structure we saw in the previous post, but he also uses a few different terms for some of his structure points.

His website is https://www.williambernhardt.com/, his Amazon Author Page is Here, and his book on structure, Story Structure: The Key to Successful Fiction (Red Sneaker Writers Book Series 1) can be found here.

Inciting Incident: This is the same as the hook. It’s the moment that grabs your readers attention and pushes your hero on their way into their adventure.

Turning Point 1: Is also the First Plot Point.

Plot Twist: Bernhardt is using Plot Twist for the First Pinch Point, but I believe this can become confusing as you read about other story structures. Whereas the Frist Pinch Point can be a Plot Twist, a Plot Twist does NOT have to be a pinch point. A plot twist can come nearly anywhere in your story.

Character Turning Point: This is the story’s Midpoint which is the turning point of your story and usually involves a turning point in your character. It can be an internal or external change, or both.

Plot Twist: This is the second pinch point.

Turing Point 2: Is the Third major Plot Point, doorway between Acts II and III.

Climax: Same as the Climax in the Magnificent Seven Plot Points and other story structures that follow.

End: Bernhardt uses End which is the same as the Resolution in other structures.

Click here to download a copy of the excel spreadsheet


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The books below I have found extremely helpful in understand plot. I have listed them in the order of I found most helpful left to right. Hope they help you as much as they did me. If there are any resources you have found helpful please share with everyone.


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Story Structure Series Part 3