Main Character & Overall Plot

by Damar Anzig

1. Does the protagonist (the one who pursues the story goal) own the Main Plot?

Not sure what you mean by "own," but the protagonist is the leading figure in pursuit of the story goal. Most of the other characters will also be concerned with (either for or against) or affected by this endeavour.

2. If the MC needs to make a crucial decision to change (and actually does it at the climax of the story), isn't that a different story altogether? Does that qualify as a subplot?

Dramatica refers to the process whereby the main character comes to and makes the decision of whether to change as the "main character throughline." It is one of four throughlines in a complete story (the others being the overall story throughline, the impact character throughline, and the relationship throughline).

You can think of these as subplots if you like. However, there are important connections between them which may not be true for all subplots. For instance, when main character decides whether or not to change (the crisis of the main character throughline), the choice he/she makes generally determines whether or not the overall story goal is achieved.

3. Can the protagonist serve as the MC's Impact Character and vice versa?

The protagonist can certainly be the impact character, provided he/she is not at the same time the main character. The only way for "vice versa" to happen is if you switch to the protagonist's point of view. When that happens, the protagonist becomes the main character of his/her own story and any other character can be the impact character of that story. Many novels are told from multiple points of view, however not every POV character's story is fully developed. Often only one character makes a crucial decision that determines the outcome of the overall story and is hence the real main character or primary POV.

4. Can you pls. point me to one of your exhaustive discussions on subplots ?

I don't know if I have exhausted this topic, but feel free to search this site for the term "subplot."

Thank you for being there...

You're most welcome.

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