Plot Twists

Question: Can you give me any advice about how and when to incorporate a plot twist? I have a general plot mapped out but I feel like it's a bit too predictable. Thanks!

Answer: One thing I can tell you is that the best place to incorporate a plot twist is at the climax.

The reason is that you want the most emotional tension at that point. The reader should not be able to predict what will happen ahead of time, so a surprise twist works very nicely.

Of course, the twist should not come out of nowhere. You should plant a few clues ahead of time, so that even if readers think they know what will happen, there are some little seeds of doubt. That's one thing that keeps them reading - wanting to see if their theory is correct or not. And it's always more fun for them to be proven wrong.

Also, if your plot seems too predictable, make sure you have developed your main character's inner conflict, so that his/her choice at the climax is far from certain.

Apart from that, you can use a twist at any of the major signposts or events, depending on your genre of course. Thrillers or horror stories, for example, may require more twists than a romance.

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