Plot Grid Help!

Oh, that makes a lot more sense to me. I think that will work, although I’ll continue to try to figure it out.

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This is the original creation of your plot grid. When you’re creating a plot grid, you can select one of these two options. When you select the Plot menu on the left and then create generic plot grid, this will create a plot grid that is not associated with one of your novels. If you create a plot grid with the second option, it creates it associated with your book and by default links the plot lines to your book scenes.

I’ve used screenshots from my ML Things notebook to explain, hence why they don’t look very novel-ly :smiley:

Creating the plot grids:

Using an associated plot grid with book scenes on the left:
Screen Shot 2020-08-22 at 7.20.08 am

Plot lines linked in scene:

Generic plot grid with no book scenes:
Screen Shot 2020-08-22 at 7.20.33 am

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Hi Tori,
Thank you very much. By “not associated” am I correct in thinking that the plot grid I label with my book’s title is set up to move the scenes around in the manuscript whenever I move them on the plot grid?
And the generic plot grid allows me to play with the plotting without having my manuscripte changed? Can I give this generic grid a title such as “My Book’s Title2” in which that label includes my book’s title with 1, 2, etc. at the end?

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Hey S11,
When you move chapters or scenes in your book, it will move the plot cards associated with it. I haven’t tried it the other way around, but I assume it works the same.
Yes, the generic one doesn’t affect your manuscript at all :slight_smile:

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One thing I like about plot grids and columns is I’m able to track the instances of a theme or theme elements that I want to pepper in my story.

For example, one thing that goes on throughout my story is that certain sensitive people are having visions of giant ring-shaped objects and glimpses of alternate worlds. Thus, I created a column titled “Rings”. So when these visions are mentioned or have an effect on the overall plot, I put a card in that column in the scene row in which that incident happens. Since I can see how often and where these incidents happen, I can plot any progress, see where they might be happening too often or might not be happening enough.

I have other columns that specifically track things like…

  • the emotional impact the overall plot is having on my main character
  • the progress of a relationship between the main character and another
  • external political events are having an effect on the main character and plot
  • a dynamic that is happening in the community that is increasingly causing more and more trouble

If I was plotting the Star Wars, I would have a column and cards for things like…

  • Every mention and use of the Force
  • The scenes where Darth is trying to flip Luke (convert to the dark side, join him, etc)
  • The times Han tries to get the hyperspace drive to work and fails
  • Every mention and ramifications of Han owing Jabba/having a price on his head
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If I was plotting for The Avengers I’d have a column for everytime Captain America says:

I can do this all day.

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Am I right in thinking that, essentially, there’s no wrong way to use the Plot Grid? As long as I have the Scenes well organised and ordered, the rest is down to personal preference and way of working?

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I’m sure that’s true but as a newcome too I found the best way to work with plot cards is in the Manuscript section. Here you can create chapters and scenes and notes at will and drag them around.
The fact you don’t see chapters in the actual plot grid view only a list of scenes makes it a bit awkward when you have a hundred scenes or so. Much more easily dealt with at a basic level in the Manuscript view. Though you need to go back to the plot grid to bring in plot lines. That would be a lot easier if the scene cards were broken down by chapter and could be folded down at chapter level too.
Still getting head round it…

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This is actually why I use Plottr more than Dabble’s Plot Grid. Confuses the hell out of me! If Plottr could export to Dabble, it would have been awesome, but damn, it exports to Scrivener and Word only.

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Hi there,

I’m new to Dabble and I’m trying to figure out the Plot function but my plot grids dont give the option of the two different types of grid. Has it changed since that was discussed here?

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If you click on “Plot” at the top of all the plot grid you’ll see where you can create them. If you create a grid using the plus at the top of the left pane it will create a generic grid.

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I may not have used it right myself but, I already had a fair bit of my first draft written and a pretty solid idea of my plot in my head. I simply used it to sort out what as going to have to happen in one chapter for me to get where I want the story to go. My first column is my main story, second column is a secondary plot, the third column I used for settings. I’m not sure if this is a correct way to use it but It makes sense to me. Think that is more important.

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Very helpful! Thank you!