Write Your Novel Step by Step (Home Page)

Write Your Novel
Step by Step


By Melanie Anne Phillips
Creator of StoryWeaver

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Write Your Novel Step By Step!

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~ Step 123 ~



Establishing Main Character Dilemma – Act One



The Main Character’s Dilemma is another tool for illustrating the thematic argument.  Because your readers identify with the Main Character, when he or she wavers between the relative values of the message issue and the counterpoint, the thematic argument becomes personal.  This helps make your message an emotional one for the reader, rather than an intellectual debate.


From the illustrations of your Main Character’s dilemma you have already developed in the Exposition Stage, select those that will best ease the reader into that personal view of the issues as experienced by your Main Character in act one.


Describe how your readers will be introduced over the course of the first act to your Main Character's Dilemma, which is the heart of the thematic conflict in your story.


Then, devise any additional illustrations that you feel will solidly establish the central importance of that dilemma to your Main Character in act one.