The Response

If you missed Part One, it’s here. Today, we’re talking about Part Two… the response, the second quarter of your story. How does your character respond to the first plot point? All Billie Jean’s dreams and goals were turned upside down when the first plot point occurred at the end of part one. Now… how does she respond? Part two is all about what she does. Does she run away? Hide? Plot? Research? Observe? Ask for help? A combination of these?

Part two is all about your character reacting to the situation that s/he has just been thrown into. S/he shouldn’t have all the answers yet, but now there is a purpose that must be pursued. How your character figures out addressing the issue is what part two is all about.

Let’s say Billie Jean has just started college. She wants to be an archeologist (she just loves Indiana Jones). Suddenly, at the end of part one, she receives a mysterious letter, begging her to change her major, and whatever else she may do, never to go to Egypt. Well, Billie Jean laughs it off at first. Must be a prank, right? But then her apartment is broken into and all her archeology books are stolen. A cryptic message is left in their place, warning her that she’d better take it seriously or she may come to personal harm. Suddenly, it doesn’t seem like such a prank. But who would do such a thing? Why?

So begins part two. How does Billie Jean react? Well, at first, she could be afraid. She could hide. She could rethink her major and consider following the advice of the mysterious letter. She could call the police. Would they shrug it off or take it seriously? She could talk about the situation with her BFF. She could get angry… how dare this unknown person take away her dream! She could get curious… What’s the big deal about going to Egypt? Why shouldn’t she go? Who is this person, anyway?

As you can see, there’s a lot of ground that can be covered in part two. This section lays the infrastructure for what is to come… the midpoint, and Billie Jean’s plan of action. Don’t jump the gun on this… let it play out.