Archetypes & Complex Characters Together

A single story may have both Archetypal and Complex Characters. The decision of how to group the functions is completely open to an author’s storytelling desires. The problem is, until one is aware of exactly what these functions are and how they relate, it is impossible to make meaningful decisions about how to combine them. These essential functions are at such a basic level that they form the elemental building blocks of Objective Characters. Therefore, we refer to these functions as character Elements. Listing them gives no feel for the end product, much as just listing the Periodic Chart of Elements in chemistry gives no feel for the natures of the compounds that might be engineered through combining them.

As a result, the best way to present the character Elements with meaning is to start with the Archetypal Characters (who by definition contain all the Elements) and break them down, step by step, level by level, until their elemental components are exposed. In this manner, understanding is carried down to the Elements, which may then be combined in non-archetypal ways to create Complex Characters.

From the Dramatica Theory Book

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