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The 5 Elements of Plot and How to Use Them in the Writing Process


If you are planning on writing a novel of your very own, you should plot out every aspect of it first. Writing a book without plotting out your book, is like going in blind. Think of the plot as a blueprint for your work. However, before you do plot out your book, you should know the 5 key elements. Here are the 5 elements of plot and how to properly use them in your writing.

1. Exposition

Exposition is one of the most necessary aspects of plotting out your writing. Some writers love to write it, while others find it somewhat complicated to do. However, if you want to plot out your writing as efficiently as possible, you will need to know how to write exposition.

The exposition is your book’s introduction. It is where you set up every aspect of your book. It is where you introduce your characters, establish the setting and show your readers the primary conflict of your story.

Exposition does not need to be too long. It should last only a few chapters. If it is too long, then your entire story will just all be exposition, and you won’t be able to start the actual story itself. You should make sure that the exposition is interesting, however,it should not take over the whole story.

2. Rising Action

The rising action is where the story actually begins. It is the part of the story that sets all the events into motion. Where the exposition is meant to explain key aspects of the story, the rising action is where the conflict appears and moves the story forwards.

The rising action is the slow build up to the climax. If you are not careful, the rising action may feel dragging in the long run. So you should make sure that the conflict is immersive and will carry your readers until the climax. It is also important that you use the rising action to hype up the climax. The more you hype it up, the more satisfying your story’s climax will be.

3. Climax

When it comes to your story’s plot, the climax is the highlight. It is the one event that your whole story is building up to. So if you are going to write the climax of your story, it is important that you make it as satisfying as possible. The climax should not come out of nowhere because it would just feel unearned and forced. So before you write your climax, it is important that you build up to it first.

Most of all, it is important that your readers are satisfied with the climax. You could use twists for your climax, just as long as it does not diminish it.

4. Falling Action

Once the climax of the story is done, it is time to write resolve all conflicts in the story. During this stage of the story, your main objective is to close it out without leaving any loose ends. Although it is not yet the conclusion, it is the part where the conflicts of the story are being slowly resolved. There is no longer a sense of tension in the story, just a sense of resolution.

5. Resolution

The resolution is where the story finally reaches its end. This is the part where all loose ends are tied, so it is important that you give your readers a satisfying ending. Nothing is more annoying to readers than to read 20 to 30 chapters of a book, only to get an open-ended conclusion. You could leave your ending on a cliffhanger if you are writing a book series, because you still have more opportunities to resolve the conflict in the next book. However, if you are writing a standalone novel, then it is best that you write a truly impactful and satisfying ending to your story.


If you are thinking of publishing a novel of your very own, it is important that you plot it out first, and know the key elements of plotting a story. By knowing the elements of plot, you’ll be able to write a truly comprehensive novel.

Thinking of self-publishing a book of your very own? Writers Republic will help you achieve your goal!

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Flynn Hannan

Flynn Hannan

Bibliophile , Senior Indie Editor at Writers Republic

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