Category Archives: Characters

What Drives Characters?

By Melanie Anne Phillips Justification is the tangled up knot of experiences that creates both understanding and misconception.  Like a ball of snarled rubber bands, it also holds a lot of potential, and if something starts to cut into it, … Continue reading

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The Main Character’s Problem

This is the nature of the Main Character’s struggle in a story. He has either built up an understanding of how to try and solve problems that no longer fits, or he has built up an understanding of what causes … Continue reading

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The Influence Character

By Melanie Anne Phillips & Chris Huntley There is one special character who represents the argument for an alternative point of view to that of the Main Character. This character, who spends the entire story making the case for change, … Continue reading

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Only One Main Character in a Story

By Melanie Anne Phillips There’s only one main character in a story.  Why?  Because a story is about the group experience of trying to achieve a goal.  When people come together around a common issue in the real world, they … Continue reading

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Archetypes vs. Stereotypes

By Melanie Anne Phillips Archetypes, by definition, are characters defined by their plot function, such as the protagonist, who is trying to achieve a goal, and the antagonist who is trying to stop him. All of the archetypes have a … Continue reading

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Protagonist v Antagonist

By Melanie Anne Phillips Some years ago, I wrote the following article describing the differences between the protagonist and antagonist archetypes.  Pretty good stuff – BUT…  Like any reasonably good teacher, I keep on learning – maybe not so much … Continue reading

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Psychoanalyze Your Story

By Melanie Anne Phillips Does your story suffer from “Multiple Personality Disorder”? In psychology, Multiple Personality Disorder describes a person who has more than one complete personality. Typically, only one of those personalities will be active at any given time. … Continue reading

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