Anne Greenwood Brown provides additional tips on how to plot a novel. As the story begins, start with an image of normal life so that the reader can see that what happens after the inciting incident takes place is abnormal. The inciting incident that sends the protagonist(s) on their new trajectory needs to be a big thing that changes the course of their life. It is something that happens to the character that incites them to action. The character now has a goal they must achieve. The goal triggers all the events that come after. The rising action becomes about two steps forward one step back. As you plot, think of the characters and their goals, what they are trying to achieve, and all the things that are standing in their way.