Save Your Plot!

Switching up the lineup today to accommodate this week’s guest author’s schedule. Be sure to check back tomorrow for our interview with Anjali Banerjee, author of Haunting Jasmine.

I recently read a blog post by author Elana Johnson in which she raved about the book Save the Cat! by Blake Snyder. I’d seen the book before at the store and even heard another writer talk about how good it was. But I think sometimes information only clicks when I’m in a mind set to receive it. The frame of mind I was in when I read Elana’s post was one of frustration with the rewrite of my WiP. Once again I was grappling with my plot, trying to get all of the loose ends tied up.

I can’t remember who it was, but I once heard an author comparing writing a novel to putting an octopus to bed. You get one arm tucked in and another three slip free.

Dead on.

So when I read Elana’s post and how Save the Cat! CHANGED HER LIFE, I just knew the book would have the answers for my plot troubles.

Save the Cat! is a quick read, written in a conversational style. I finished it in one sitting, completing the steps as I read. I worked up a beat sheet for my WiP, wrote out index cards and used my Magic Wall to storyboard. When I reached the end of the book, I stepped back and Lo!, there was my plot staring back at me. I could see the whole thing. Wrap my arms and brain around it. The opening. The ending. Those exciting chapters that are so fun to write. The strong points and the weak.


Since reading Save the Cat! and working the board, I’ve been ticking off the notecards one by one. Getting the rewrite done. Getting this show on the road. Tucking this wriggling octopus into bed.

I can’t recommend Save the Cat! enough. Even though it’s geared toward screenwriting, it has plenty to offer the fiction writer as well.

Check it out. Maybe you, too, will find it to be the book that changes your life. Your writing life, at least.