There are several conflicts in Plainsong as it consists of 7 main characters. However, these conflicts end up woven together, as the characters lives eventually overlap. The central conflict of Plainsong is that 17-year old Victoria Robideaux, the protagonist, becomes pre-maturely pregnant. The conflict is person vs. society; Victoria struggles as she finds herself abandoned and being helped by one of her teachers, Maggie Jones and two strangers. Due to circumstances Victoria is forced to live with the McPheron brothers (old bachelors), who have worked all their lives on their farm in isolation. The protagonist’s conflict to fit in is resolved when she bonds with the brothers and they accept her as a part of their family despite her situation.
The story begins with the trigger incident when Victoria and her mother become aware of her pregnancy (P. 10). Victoria’s mother is ashamed and disgusted by what her daughter has gotten herself into. Victoria’s mother kicking her out of the house sets up the trigger event that causes Victoria to desperately search for help in her community.
There are four main incidents in this story. The first main incident is when Maggie Jones’s mentally ill father hurts Victoria while she is living in their house. This eventually leads to Victoria having to move in with the McPheron brothers. The second main incident is when the McPheron brothers begin to show attachment to Victoria. In this quotation, the McPherons want to take Victoria shopping for a baby crib because they are concerned that she spends too much time alone in her bedroom, “Feeling lonesome and sorry like that, That can’t be good for the baby. On top of staying up all manner of hours and sleeping all morning.” (P. 173). The third main incident is when Victoria runs away to live with Dwayne, the guy who impregnated her. After she attends an all-night drug and alcohol party with Dwayne, she realizes how dangerous he is and returns to the brothers.