Character Justifications

The creation of Justification is the purpose of and reason for Backstory. The dismantling of Justification is the purpose and function of the Acts. The gathering of information necessary to dismantle Justification is the purpose and function of the Scenes. And the nature of the specific Justifications used in a particular story determines all the […]

Dramatica Definition: Justification

Justification • The process by which we establish and maintain givens • All understanding comes from determining connections between processes and results, causes and effects. All anticipation comes from accepting these connections as unchanging and absolute. In this manner we are able to respond to new situations based on our experience and to plan for […]

Why Characters Misunderstand Each Other

This article was originally written as part of an early draft of our book on the Dramatica theory of narrative which but was never included.  It seeks to describe how characters come to misunderstand each other, and how this can lead to conflict. I’m reprinting it here due to the really useful concepts it brings to light, but […]

Excuses, Excuses…

When a child comes up with a false reason for some small transgression, we know he is just making an excuse to avoid punishment or to side-step a negative emotional response. Adults continue to make excuses; they just do it in a far more sophisticated way.  What’s more, we often make excuses to ourselves, convincing […]

Narrative Science and Dramatica

Every once in a while I write an article about the Dramatica theory of narrative structure that zooms right down to the subatomic level. Such articles have absolutely no practical value to writers but, being a narrative scientist, it is a means demonstrating the depth and complexity of the Dramatica theory to my fellow self-proclaimed […]