Over on the Camp NaNoWriMo bulletin board, I suggested that those of you having trouble coming up with a story line should spend a little time watching hour-long TV dramas. If you don’t have time for that, think about a favorite children’s book or nursery rhyme. “The Three Little Pigs” serves the purpose well.
Here’s a diagram of a story arc to guide you.:
Three little pigs are the heroes, and their goal is finding a home that will assure their survival. The villain is the big bad wolf living in the neighborhood because, unfortunately, he likes pork. (Crisis #1)
Pig #1 builds a house (his solution), although his choice of grass as building material is pretty weak. BBW comes along and blows it away. (Crisis #2)
Pig #2 builds a better house, using sticks this time (recovery from crisis) but BBW crushes it easily. (Crisis #3) Tension is now high.
Pig #3 steps up and builds his house of bricks (an even better solution to their problem). BBW can’t destroy it from the outside, so he crawls onto the roof to stomp it in. If this house doesn’t survive, our pigs are doomed. (Crisis #4)
But BBW falls down the chimney and lands in a pot of water boiling on the fire. (Climax. It’s something of a miracle, but, hey, this is a fairy tale!)
Pigs throw a few veggies into the pot and they all feast on wolf stew for dinner before living happily ever after. (denouement)