|Photo Credit : Shannon Christine|
What's the Inciting Incident?
It's the moment where suddenly everything changes, and .... Wham! the MC has some serious problems to deal with. Her life will never be the same.
Because I like research, before I started re-writing my inciting incident, I decided to do do a little sleuthing on the web for inspiration. Here's a summary of what I found, and links to more info!
Tips For Writing the Inciting Incident
- Before page 30, or if you really must, before page 50. Any later = yawn.
- After you've given the reader a taste (maybe quite small) of the MC's normal life.
- It's the big/crazy/scary event/revelation that incites the MC to act.
- Readers should clearly see the stakes/motivation -- why the MC needs to act.
- It doesn't have to be (and often shouldn't be) the core conflict, but it should point toward the core conflict.
A Few Resources:
Janice Hardy - Something to Get Inciting About || Bubble Cow - Understanding Conflict || How to Start a Novel || Redefining the Inciting Incident (if you want a bit of brain-overload) || Stephen Pressfield - The Inciting Incident (with movie examples) || Scribe Meets World - Inciting Incident || Wordplay - Secrets of Story Structure || L.B. Schulman - Plotting pt. 4 || Michelle Hoover - From Stable Ground to Inciting Incident ||