Is this the idea? Building suspense

My WIP is a trilogy. I’m trying to build suspense using this theory, especially in light of the “unseen” elements mentioned in Ch22 of Dramatica for Screenwriters.

Let’s say My BIG Story

Signpost 1: LEARNING
Signpost 2: DOING
Signpost 3: OBTAINING

Book One starts up at Tr_Midpoint, the end of Doing and the Beginning of Obtaining.

Book 1_OS
Signpost 2: DOING
Signpost 3: OBTAINING
Signpost 4: LEARNING

In the course of which they Learn Trilogy OS SP 1, but are still mystified by the Doing Part, especially as the Doing is moving on to Obtaining

So by the end of Book One, there are still unresolved issues, unrevealed explanations.

The rest of the Tr_OS…

Throughline: PHYSICS
Direction: FAITH
Catalyst: APPROACH
Benchmark: DOING

Is being deciphered by the Protagonist/MC in book 1, while the MC of the Trilogy is the IC of Book 1.

My plan, then, would be for Book 2 to decipher the Continual Trilogy SP 2 DOING, while also tackling the Tr_SP 3 Obtaining (by means of B2 OS/IC_SP4).

Then Book 3 is for the Trilogy Protagonist/MC to arrive at Understanding, by means of the Book 3 OS/IC_SP4 through means of Book 3_RS.

If that looks theoretically correct, how do I manage the Trilogy_OS MC/IC/RS SP1 and SP2?

Do I fast forward to SP 3 for all of them, and part of the discovery/reveal eventually includes their reasons?

The Tr_OS “antagonist” is the B1, B2 Behind the scenes Tr_IC who is discovered in B2 and full enemy in B3.

In other words:
(change) MC: Protagonist (IC for all books, change begins at end of B1)
(steadfast) IC: (secret) Antagonist for all books

Signpost 1: LEARNING (Deciphered in Book 1)

Signpost 2: DOING (Deciphered in Book 2)
…Book One Starts here and deciphers SP 1 & some of 2; (TrMC begins change.)

Signpost 3: OBTAINING
…Book Two Fights the Obtaining while deciphering SP 2; (TrMC fights the type of Change)
…Book Three Moves Tr from Obtaining into Understanding (TrMC full Change enables Tr_OS resolution)


I think you’ve mostly got it. Just note that Trilogy SP1 being Learning tells you that at that point in the backstory of your trilogy, there was conflict from Learning. So it might tell you that “3 years ago, the Baron learned a terrible secret, and the King made a deal with the Baron to prevent the secret from getting out”.

Later on, your characters might learn what happened 3 years ago, but that’s not the Learning that Trilogy SP1 is about (since that took place earlier, and you’re already on say Trilogy SP3).

Of course, you could show flashbacks to 3 years ago if you want to show the Learning signpost in action.

Does that make sense?

The way I was spinning it is Learning about the Learning. The thing they accomplished way-back was a learning-based discovery. The story pushes for figuring out why things are this way, which has to do with that discovery.

And now, in SP4 of the current story (book 1), they are brought back into that historic trilogy Learning/Discovery phase (Tr_SP1)and getting the full 411 in the present (B1 SP4) brings about the crisis/ending act driver.