I watched “The Doctor’s Daughter” today and noticed this for the first time. I’ve heard some theories are out there about this but, well…a picture is worth a thousand words, so I made this “meme” about it. What do you think?
So, you’ve made it this far, huh? You’ve taken all the basics of story building (The Tri-Core Substructure, the Five Act Structure, Genre, Genotype, Character Development), you’ve carefully designed your story (Five Stage Plot, The Hero’s Journey, Micro Stories, Episodic Reduction), but that’s not enough for you. You want some tricks and tools to make your story unique…to make it stand out. Most importantly, you don’t really want your reader to figure out what you’re up to. You want to grab the reader by the nose, lead them through your complex, masterful, story weaving, and deliver a climax that will leave them breathless. You want your story to be unforgettable.
Welcome to the club.
Here are a few common tricks and tools you can use to twist your story exactly the way you want. You’ve probably thought of a few of these things, but for the best effect you should make sure they are implemented properly. Each item has some peculiarities you should remember, otherwise your efforts may fall flat or go unnoticed by the reader.
What is a micro story? It’s a story within the story. This is more common with epics than it is with smaller, self-contained stories, but can still be used effectively when done right. The first and most important point in considering putting this into your story, is that micro stories must always work for the greater story. That is why this is so high up on the complexity list, because the foundational story must be firmly established. Each micro story should reflect or add to the foundational story, otherwise it just becomes a spin-off (self-contained unrelated stories grown out of the original). You don’t want spin-off stories, because they detract and distract from the point of the foundational story. Let micro stories work together to create a weaved tale with one common end goal.
There are two major types of micro stories. POV stories and story-arcs. Some writers may equivicate the two into one definition, preferring to call them all “story-arcs.” But I think there’s an important distinction to be made.