I’ve heard writing teachers say that you should avoid subplots for your first few novels. What? We don’t get to play in the full sandbox? I don’t think I’ve ever written a book without a subplot or a bunch of ’em. Subplots are story lines in addition to the main one. They often feature a different point of view character, but not always. For instance, if your detective falls in love, he may pursue his interest in a way that needs a new plot thread. When to use subplots The de
You’ve got your novel’s cast of characters, let’s say. You’ve carefully considered the central conflict between two characters.You’ve thought through who else hinders–and helps–your protagonist. Some of these may feature prominently, heading up subplots. If you’re inspired by Christopher Vogler’s The Writer’s Journey, you may have discovered a character or two with dramatic archetype functions such as the mentor, threshold guardian, or herald. Fun stuff. More work lies ahead.