Holes, of the plot variety

One thing I had the WORST time with when I started writing was plot holes. Partly, it was a result of pantsing everything. Partly, it was the result of having absolutely NO clue how to structure a story. It annoyed me. I knew, even when I finished a draft, that I’d have to rewrite a large part of the story to make the ending I loved make sense. I never had to rewrite essays and such in school, so for me, the thought of rewriting an entire novel to make it work was just too much work. This lead to a ton of finished and unreadable projects.

Finally, I took almost a year off writing, and focused all the time and energy I normally spent on writing into reading. I read voraciously in the first place, but this time, I was reading with a purpose. I started with romances, as that’s what I was mainly writing at the time, yet in doing so found a problem. The more I read, the less I liked. Reading a lot in one genre type made it very easy for me to spot the patterns and archetypes of the genre. The formulas that everyone leans on.

But it had an upside as well. I figured out what structures I wanted to use. I like a third act twist, where you don’t see it coming, and once you see it, you wonder how you could have possibly missed it. With that in mind, I plotted out my Nano. And for once, I was able to avoid any giant plot holes. The third act twist was something I sorta had worked out ahead of time, but it twisted further even. That’s easy enough to fix in edits, it’s a matter of degrees.

How do you deal with plot holes? Spackle? Bulldoze the whole thing? Or make a good enough blue print that you don’t have to worry about it?


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