Take your journal seeds and map out a plot for your short story. Remember, even if the conflict comes from your own experience, that doesn’t mean you have to stick to your experience. As you develop your plot, you can begin to invent actions and characters, even the source of conflict or how things are resolved. You can also place the story in a different setting. Instead of Minnesota , it could be in Paris or Nevada . Of course, you might want to stick to what you know!

In outlining your plot, remember that it is an outline! Stick to the plot details – don’t try to write the whole story! Most plots have an opening incident that gets the conflict going. Then the conflict builds to a climax. The climax is the high point of the story. The part of the story after the climax is relatively short. It is called the “denouement” or ending, and brings out what the character learns or how he or she changes.

At the end of your plot outline, write a one-sentence theme of the story. It should capture what you think the story is saying about how people live. A theme might be: “True friends are loyal.”

Submit the plot summary and theme for your short story. Outline a plot from your journal.Get the plot for your story from your journal entry that describes an experience of conflict, such as a disagreement between friends. State the thesis or main idea behind the plot.

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