Plotting by the Cards

A few years ago, for my birthday, my sister gave me a deck of Tarot cards called The Dragon Tarot. I had several other decks of cards in my possession at the time, but I didn’t have the same affinity with those decks as I instantly developed with the dragon deck.

I have friends who would definitely frown on my even thinking of owning a deck of tarot cards, much less having an affinity with one, but that is not my concern. I love this deck and use it as one of my best loved writing tools ever. I have a book, also, called Tarot for Writers and learned from it to use the tarot as a means to plot a story.

I’ve written about this previously, but was reminded today, when I spotted an anthology call that I wanted to submit to. I immediately grabbed my dragon deck and shuffled the major arcana cards to find my protagonists and antagonist. I drew the moon, and judgement as my protagonists, and the sun as my antogonist. I can already see the dim outlines of the characters related to those cards taking shape. I then shuffled the court cards and drew two cards to represent minor characters. I drew the Ace of Cups and the Page of Pentacles. Again, immediately connecting to the types of people these cards might align with. So just by shuffling some cards, I have got my main characters minor characters and a sketchy idea for how they all fit together.

Next, I will work with the whole deck to find character motivations, barriers and how those will work to form my story.

This is a quick and simple way that I work when I don’t already have a story or characters in mind for something. How do you go about getting an idea for a particular call?

About megleigh

When not busy writing, Meg Leigh spends her time tending to the most pampered flock of chickens on Australia’s east coast. She would really like to have dragons, but has settled for chickens because they come pretty close. If you need proof of this, try offering a flock of chickens raw meat! (Meg would like to advise she accepts no liability for loss of fingers!) Meg also enjoys reading, keeping fit with her bunch of madcap mates at the local park, and spending time with her adult offspring whenever their schedules allow.
This entry was posted in blogging, Lesfic, Meg Leigh, nuts and bolts, romance, Writing and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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