Assignment: Write a Scenario Based on a Formula Plot
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Some writers use formulas to inspire their scripts, especially in television. Your assignment is to write a short paragraph (at least 3 sentences) for each point in the formula plot outline below. This story line can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be. It can be the tale of a turbulent event in the life of a lady bug or an epic hero’s journey through a time warp, as long as all of the elements of a formula
plot are considered. Remember the Aristotelian idea that a plot is an “arrangement of events.”
Please consider how one event leads to another (cause and effect).
For this assignment, please write which category you are responding to. Here is an example:
Introduction: A peaceful forest in the Amazon Forest. Billy (a ladybug) and Teddy (another ladybug) are lying on beach chairs on a sandy beach near a waterfall. We hear the animal noise and sounds of the forest in the background, and a gentle breeze rippling through the trees. Billy and Teddy are drinking beer and smoking cigars. They are the best of buddies.
Event: Todd (an extremely large size ladybug) enters in a ferocious mood. We hear his wings beating to a drum like beat as he flies in, swats the water, sending a huge spray over Billy and Teddy. Billy and Teddy start shaking the water off of them and pick up their chairs and beer while swearing under their breath.
Here are the categories you are addressing:
A short description of the world and characters that belong to the story (the equilibrium that will be disturbed by the inciting incident later).
Where the plot begins in the larger story of the lives of your characters–remember that this event is meant to draw the interest of the audience in preparation for the rest of the plot.
III. Inciting Incident
The disturbance that upsets the equilibrium and leads to a decision that triggers the chain of events to follow.
IV. Rising Action(s)
Create conflicts for your characters that involve struggles, obstacles, and decisions. Include at least three
in your outline.
V. Darkest Hour
When everything seems hopeless and goals seem unattainable.
Something sheds light on the problem–a revelation occurs.
A dramatic confrontation.
VIII. Denouement (pronounced Day-New-Ma)
*Allow the formula to guide your creation. Who knows, you may come up with a great idea for a play!