The Objective Story Issue

The Objective Story is the overall story in which all the characters are involved.  Essentially, it is what the reader or audience will think of as the “plot” of the story. 

To add meaning and purpose to your objective story you’ll want to include a message, statement or value judgment about some aspect of life or some human quality.  The subject you choose to explore will be your Objective Story Issue.

For any given issue there can be many points of view. To make a successful argument about a particular point of view on the issue an author must address them all, yet select one as the preferred perspective.

If an author wishes to merely explore an issue rather than argue it, the issue must still be touched on by all perspectives and the author must select one of them as the view from which all the others are measured.

If this yardstick is not provided, the reader/audience is free to judge anything from any point of view and will simply adopt the one they are familiar with out of habit.   As a result, they will gain no new understanding and the story will have no meaning or purpose other than to reiterate what the audience already knew.

Conversely, if an author wishes to make a point or deliver a message or even document the similarities and differences between dramatic incidents, then the events of the story must be measured against something.

Choosing the Issue tells an audience by what standard the author intends them to evaluate what they experience in the story.

Ultimately, the objective story thematic issue places the story’s central problem in context.

Excerpted from
Dramatica Story Development Software