How Dominoes Can Help You Write More Compelling Fiction


When you think of domino shows, what comes to mind is an astonishing lineup of hundreds or even thousands of dominoes carefully lined up and toppled by just a small push from an audience member. Builders compete to show their skill at creating complex domino effects or reactions for fans’ entertainment – but domino effects can also provide insights into narrative structure, which could help writers craft more engaging fiction.

A domino is a rectangular piece of wood, bone or marble with a vertical line running down its center that visually divides it into two squares with different values — known as ends — on each. Each end may include dots called pips or be blank – some sets contain all possible combinations while other variants such as double-six sets only display values on one side while leaving one blank or lacking pips.

Dominoes can be used in numerous games, both casual and competitive. When used for competitive play, dominoes may involve building chains of dominoes from one end of a table to the other without stopping. When completed successfully, one wins. For other types of dominoes games, players take turns placing dominoes so chains continue to form; when one player cannot add another domino, they pass and another player takes their turn.

Some dominoes are made from natural materials like silver lip ocean pearl oyster shell (mother of pearl), ivory or dark hardwoods like ebony; these dominoes may feature inlaid black or white pips for decoration purposes. Some dominoes even made from ceramic clay and frosted glass may weigh significantly more than traditional polymer dominoes.

Though the domino effect can help make for more captivating fiction writing, its applications in nonfiction are just as useful. For instance, business can use this concept to plan its growth and development by using it as a planning tool that will ensure all aspects of their company are moving in harmony with one another and are headed in one direction.

Use the domino effect to organize your research and plan a project, ensure your writing flows from point to point logically, or structure a speech or presentation.

Richard Nixon famously justified his policies in Latin America on domino theory grounds during the 1970s. He asserted that communist Chile and Cuba would form an impregnable “red sandwich”, making the US powerless to influence them. This approach can also be applied to other policy issues.

When creating scenes in stories, it’s essential that each domino effect leads naturally into the next. A good scene should neither be too long (with too many details or minutiae) nor too short (making key plot points or discovery moments seem shallow). Instead, the best scenes advance their story while remaining true to both its characters and their motivations.