This page, and all pages under the ‘Plot’ menu, contains ‘behind the scenes’ commentary about The Cosmic Chicken from a writer’s perspective. Readers who wish to enjoy the story as a work of fiction may find the following content distracting.
The plot is a story’s narrative path through five conventional phases: exposition, rising action, climax, falling action and denouement. It’s the story laid out in response to the dramatic question: What happens next? Plot presupposes a protagonist, an antagonist and a conflict.
A plot-driven story heightens conflict, usually by accentuating the ‘good’ and ‘evil’ traits of antagonists and protagonists, and by speeding up the action through frequent, increasingly violent encounters. These effects are often achieved by extreme and simplified treatments of character, setting and theme.
More nuanced stories reveal character and meaning through plots that challenge conventional notions of right and wrong with crises that are realistic and difficult or impossible to resolve. A sense of inevitability often develops and tragic empathy for antagonist as well as protagonist.