The simple acronym SCOOP IT UP will help you identify the important parts for building your story in a few sentences, several pages, or a book: (1) Situation, (2) Character, (3) Objective, (4) Obstacle, (5) Plight, (6) Insight & Transformation, (7) Unresolved Problem. Understand these areas, and you can determine what details are important to your audience and what should be left out.
For your story to be captivating, it must have an interesting Situation in which a Character has an important Objective in which he or she faces a significant Obstacle, putting the outcome in doubt. The Plight, showing great cost for failure and great value for success, must carry the audience through an emotional journey that leads to the character’s Insight and Transformation in which each failure or success results in an Unresolved Problem.
A great story has been, and always will be, about a character facing conflict and the suspense of not knowing what’s going to happen next. — James Scott Bell
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