What Is a Plot Hole? - Deepstash
What Is a Plot Hole?

What Is a Plot Hole?

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What Is a Plot Hole?

What Is a Plot Hole?

A plot hole is any inconsistency or gap that counters the logic in a story’s plot.

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5 Major Plot Hole Errors

  1. Illogical Events: An all-powerful villain is easily defeated.
  2. Contradictions: A character’s personality changes greatly between two scenes with no explanation.
  3. Unresolved Storylines: A secondary character is given their own subplot, which is not resolved.
  4. Impossible Events: A character travels too quickly between far distances.
  5. Continuity Errors: A character seemingly forgets a vital piece of information they knew earlier in the story.

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Tips for Finding Plot Holes

Tips for Finding Plot Holes

  • Remain objective. The best practice of putting your manuscript aside and approaching with fresh eyes helps you maintain objectivity.
  • Follow your characters. As you read, make sure that each character is consistent within the story and has a definite personality.
  • Create a story timeline. Make a list of chapters and major events in the chapter. Make sure the sequence of events makes sense: days, months, years, or even morning to evening. Note the characters present in the chapter.
  • Examine your plot. Question the plot logic. Has a journey been abandoned or question gone unanswered? Has a character made choices or said something that does not fit their personality?
  • Is your story world consistent? Do cultural norms shift? Is your fantasy magic logic consistent?
  • Check your subplots. Follow each one from beginning to end. Make sure all of them are complete.
  • Keep revision notes. They may open up threads that create new plot holes.
  • Hire a professional editor. If cost is a concern, ask a fellow writer to read your novel or suggest an exchange.

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Tips for Fixing Plot Holes

Tips for Fixing Plot Holes

  • Rewrite an inconsistency to fit the story. For example, give the suspect who went for a walk in the storm muddy shoes and/or a damp jacket.
  • Make the implausible plausible. If a character is acting out of character, rewrite the scene to fit the character actions and speech with their overall character portrayal and role in the story.
  • Examine the character. What do they want? What is their goal? What is their plan?
  • Rethink the scene or thread. Your first idea is not always the best idea.
  • Brainstorm the scene with what-if questions.
  • Go back to your original outline to check where the story goes off track.
  • Read the story as a reader. What trips you up?

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33 reads

CURATED BY

growthaprentice

she/her | Cybersecurity Professional | Writer | Sharing what I learn to help others :)

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