Motivation for a character story goal

by Mackenzie

Hello, I've been pondering why I cannot seem to get my story moving like I want too. I realized I had characters designed and personalities made but I cannot find something that motivates them to move the story along. My question is, how can I create a motivation for a main character that furthers the story goal? If this sounds confusing I apologize but I can't seem to get out of this block...

Answer: Ideally, a main character will be someone uniquely suited to pursue the story goal.

Sometimes this is because he/she has unique skills or is in a unique position to pursue it.

A better choice is to create a main character with a strong emotional drive that compels him/her to pursue the goal more determinedly than any other character.

Conversely, the goal should promise to give the main character something that will satisfy their essential inner dissatisfaction.

To take a cliche, many crime stories feature a policeman who is driven by his former failure to solve a murder. His guilt gives him a relentless drive to solve the next big murder case that comes his way.

Another example: many main characters are driven by a desire to prove themselves -- a desire that comes from having been raised by a disapproving parent.

Consider that, apart from a main character's obvious qualities, he or she should be driven by something -- perhaps a chip on his shoulder, a hole in her heart, a deep desire, or something unresolved from his past. See if you can give your main character a drive that will compel him/her to embark on the journey to achieve the story goal.

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