General, writing

Plot: Deliverance

One of the many dramatic scenarios is deliverance. While at first it might seem a simple and straight forward plot, that’s not always the case. You can check out some of the other scenarios here.

  • An unfortunate is threatened and is saved by the rescuer.

In variations of this scenario, the unfortunate in question may have created the initial conflict leading to the threat. The threat can come in different forms, but often is coming to carry out some form of justice on the unfortunate. The rescuer of course, saves the unfortunate from this threat.

Initially this seems like a straight forward conflict, but that may not be so. When dealing with deliverance, you often have to get to the why of the threat. Why does it exist in the first place? Your unfortunate here may in fact, not be particularly unfortunate and might actually deserve some justice delivered to them. This makes it easy to blend deliverance in with other plots such as imprudence or revenge.

Your main character can easily fit into just about any place in the deliverance scenario. As an unfortunate, they may be running from the threat (thus allowing you to also blend in pursuit or repentance.) Making your main character the threat itself is easiest with character or plot driven stories, as the unfortunate is eventually rescued in most cases. And of course, as the rescuer, your main character has the chance to bring a close to the conflict with the unfortunate more or less intact.

Because deliverance blends easily with other plots, it can be hard to tell the difference between it as a main plot and as a minor plot. Even looking at where the obstacles are doesn’t necessarily help. Obstacles might be between the threat and the unfortunate via the rescuer, or they might fall between the unfortunate and the rescuer. Either way, they can become the main plot of a story, or an underlying note for a particular set of characters.


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