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Apply the Why: Your Story Epoxy

By Michael Schilf · April 7, 2010

Always ask yourself “The Why”: why does your hero ask to be in the story? Because then you begin to find out why you want to write the whole story, and what the passion of that character is, and why she wants what she wants.

Eventually you reach the moment where you can dream for your character, where you can remember everything that occurred in her past. When that happens, you’re safe because the character finds her way towards the resolution. At this point, the problem is how to hit your character in her most vulnerable spot: put her in the worst predicament imaginable, strengthen that predicament, and increase her desire to achieve her goals. Once you get that, you’ve got a story growing, and when you can see the sequences and the acts, the story begins to unravel, and you finally have a chance to feel at least a little bit secure.

But how do you ask "The Why"? Simple. Use our Character Questionnaire and Story Questionnaire to get you started.