Conquer Act Two. Complete Your Story in Less Time--and with Less Frustration
If you’re like me, you know how your screenplay or novel* is going to start and end. Maybe not the exact image or line, but you’ve got a rough idea of what you’re going to write. So you begin writing your story with lots of enthusiasm...until you reach the middle, aka Act Two.
That’s where you get stuck. Suddenly, all of your enthusiasm evaporates. Blank pages are scary in general. Blank pages from Act Two, those are downright terrifying.
But if you figure out which events end Act Two—often referred to as the “all is lost” moment—everything else will fall into place. If you do that, you’ll be writing screenplay or novel pages quickly. They’ll be good pages too. Pages which engage, excite, and enthrall.
*** So, What’s the Key to Plotting the Perfect “All Is Lost” Moment? ***
It’s simple: craft a sequence which is filled with pain, emotion, and paradox...what I like to call the hero’s “trough of hell.” Combined, these three elements re-engage audiences, right when their interest is about to flag. That’s why it’s so important to get this plot point right. This writing guide will show you exactly what to do.
*** With This Screenwriting Guide, You’ll Learn: ***
--how to use 4 different pain types to inflict maximum damage to your hero (and why you should) --3 methods to make the trough of hell more emotionally intense—without altering a single beat of the “all is lost” moment --how a hero seems to be the furthest away from his goal, when you and I both know he’s about to accomplish it in 15 pages (give or take) --7 common ways to end Act Two and how to overcome the unique challenges each presents --how to enchant audiences by combining multiple trough types --the trick Peter Jackson used to increase the emotional weight of THE TWO TOWERS --why the most effective way to hurt your hero—even in an action movie—doesn’t involve blood, burns, or bruises --5 different forms of betrayal you can use to split your heroes apart --how to use setups and payoffs to extricate your hero from dicey situations (like capture and death) --the secret sauce to turning allies into foes (think Dr Nichols in THE FUGITIVE) --what stuck out the most to Johnny Depp when filming THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL...and why it matters to you, as a screenwriter --the STAR WARS secret which will help you achieve galactic screenwriting dominion --5 cliché-free ways to show your hero’s post-trough distress --how to pace your story like a pro --how to handle problems specific to thrillers, action movies, comedies, and romantic comedies
*** Like Examples? Me Too! ***
I’m a big fan of learning by example. So I use plenty of them to illustrate my points. But sometimes examples just aren’t enough. That’s why I’ve also included 8 detailed case studies which should help you put together all the writing secrets you'll learn from this book.
All blockbuster films, the case studies include BRIDESMAIDS, THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING, ABOUT A BOY, OCEAN’S 11, and BRAVEHEART.
*** Never Get Stuck in the Middle of Your Story Ever Again ***
Conquer Act Two...for good. Write your story with more ease, more speed, and more confidence. Scroll up and buy Trough of Hell today!
* While all the examples come from movies, this writing guide can help authors who are struggling with the middle section of their novels.
Other titles in the Story Structure Essentials series: Inciting Incident: How to Begin Your Screenplay or Novel and Captivate Audiences Right Away (While Accomplishing Your Long-Term Plotting Goals)
Midpoint Magic: How to Swing Your Screenplay or Novel in a New Direction and Say Good-Bye to Sagging Story Middles That Put Audiences to Sleep
Story Climax: How to Avoid Disappointed Audiences and Craft a Screenplay or Novel Climax That Thrills and Delights
If you're serious about writing screenplays and novels that audiences will love, take a look at: Story Stakes: Your #1 Writing Skills Strategy to Produce a Page-Turner that Transforms Readers into Raving Fans of Your Screenplay or Novel
Keywords: the middle of a screenplay, the middle of a novel, screenplay structure, story structure, act two of a screenplay, how to write a screenplay, how to write a novel, help with the all is lost moment, help with plotting a novel, help with plotting a screenplay