The “What is Plot?” Series: Types of Plots (Part Two)

Photo courtesy of mpclemens.

Welcome back for the second part of my series called “What is Plot?” This week we’ll have a brief talk about the seven main types of plots. It can be a bit (read: a lot) of extra work to actually find out how many there actually are. Why? Because it depends on how all of them are categorized.

As I mentioned, most writers learn, through the process of writing, of course, that seven main plots exist. They may sound alike because they tend to overlap a bit. It is these seven plots that are generally made new by every writer. That is, they find new ways of using the plots, making them them feel just that—new.

The seven main plots are:

  • Man vs. Nature
  • Man vs. Man
  • Man vs. Environment
  • Man vs. Machine/Technology
  • Man vs. Supernatural
  • Man vs. Himself
  • Man vs. God/Religion

Because one of those seven plots has to be chosen, the creation of an interesting and original story is completely in the hands of the writer. How a writer guides his/her plot is one of, if not the, biggest factor in determining the quality of a piece of writing.

Related Post(s): The “What is Plot?” Series: Definition & Categories (Part One)

[Which plot type(s) do you find the easiest to write? Do you have advice for other regarding plot types? Feel free to share in the comments.]

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