I feel the same way about a lot of that. Particularly about it being harder to explain. But I also think that’s why it’s important to keep trying. Not only do you find clearer ways of explaining things, but you make things clearer for yourself and give others that are not to that point yet another perspective to maybe help push along their own understanding.
In fact, the reason I posted—and I hope it didn’t feel like I was picking at your personal understanding as I’ve learned so much from you—is that I think separating perspectives from players is really hard to do and I feel like I’m just getting to the other side of being able to do it. As such, i find it is harder to describe to others because I know that I now have a slightly different view from what I had, and I know that if I tried to explain how I see things now to myself from before I had this view, I never would have gotten it because I just hadn’t gained this new view yet...if that makes sense. So hopefully by bringing it up we’ll bring more clarity.
But I’m seeing more and more that there’s this idea that, because the storyform is what it is, there are things that must or can’t happen in a story, and that is a limiting idea. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not a bad idea per se. For people who are starting out with the theory, it’s actually very helpful to speak in a way that limits certain ideas just as training wheels on a bike limit a rider from a particularly sharp and dangerous turn or other things. But there comes a time to remove the training wheels and there comes a time to quit limiting your ability to tell a story.
Let me pause right here and say that I am not talking about you specifically taking off the wheels, or anyone else. I’m just speaking about the journey in general that everyone must take in order to further understand story. And in actuality, I problem am, in fact, talking about a certain person when I say it’s time to take off the training wheels. Myself.
But again, I think it’s a good idea in a forum to give beginners those limitations, and I suspect that’s what Jim and others are mostly doing. But as I try to take those limitations out of my own understanding, I see that anything can happen in your story. There are no limitations. The IC can influence and/or create conflict for any player. As Jim says, that can be confusing and you have to be careful, but it can absolutely be done. And your MC can be influenced by the processes an inanimate mountain embodies or exhibits because it’s not about the mountain, but about the processes, about the space between the MC and mountain, about the view of the mountain from the MC perspective.
That’s what it’s all about. It’s not about what happens in the story, but about how the Storymind views what’s happening in the story. People come to Dramatica with the view that they will use structure to build their story, so it looks like structure determines what happens in the story. But from another view, structure doesn’t do anything to the story. The story just is what it is. Instead structure provides a reference frame from which to view what happens in the story. Structure is, in a sense, our justification for saying that a story has meaning.