Relationship of Story Driver to Journeys

Recently, a writer asked about the relationship of the Story Driver to the three Journeys in every throughline.  Here’s my response:

The Story Driver is one of the eight dynamic questions (the eight “essential” questions) that Dramatica asks, including Main Character Resolve (change or steadfast) and Story Outcome (Success or Failure).

Story Driver is Action or Decision. That means that the story is kicked off by either an action taken (such as a murder) or experienced (such as an earthquake) or by a decision made (such as to quit smoking) or arrived at (such as “I’ve gotta stop being a workaholic”)

The four signposts in each act are just that – signposts along the road from the inciting incident to the conclusion of your story. Moreover, each signpost can be seen as a town along the road. Each town has a particular nature (like “Learning” or “Understanding”) and somewhere between the two towns, the influence of one gives way to the influence of the other.

So, when you Journey from town to town you are gradually moving from the heart of downtown (greatest influence) of one through the area where their influence is equal until you arrive at the downtown (greatest influence) of the next town.

Four towns are along the road for each of the four perspectives. So, there are four Signposts spanned by three journeys.

Each Journey is kicked off by another incident of the Story Driver. So, if an action started the quest from the first town (signpost) the leads it to the second signpost, then things would stop right there unless the Driver kicks it into gear again with another incident. Eventually, the fourth signpost (the destination) is reached and the momentum is brought to a complete stop by a final Driver incident that bring all the inertia to a halt. So, the Driver starts it all and the Driver brings it all to a conclusion, and the Driver is what kicks off each journey and brings the whole quest to a conclusion.

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