Change of Objective; Success or Failure?

My MC starts off the story searching for her family. her goal quickly changes to survive first, then find my family. So at the end, she is safe, and happy about being safe. But still the overall goal (cont in next volume) is to find the family.

OS is what “everyone” wants… In the larger story, she is avoiding them discovering her secret identity. And when she avoids being caught (survives) and arrives in the safe place, it ends well for her. Not bittersweet per se.

The MC changes her goal at PP1 to survival: from finding them to escaping capture. Arriving at a safe place. She is trapped. She gets out of the trap.

So for the overall story it’s good for the MC. But the “other characters” don’t get what they wanted, since she succeeded in eluding them. Success?

What is PP1 – halfway through Signpost 2? (what KM Weiland calls “pinch point 1”)?

The Goal isn’t necessarily something the characters know about. And it’s not what everyone wants, just what everyone in the OS is somehow embroiled or mixed up in. (Obviously, the Antagonist, and those aligned with the Antagonist, are against the Goal.)

If the ending feels triumphant, not bittersweet, then the Goal was probably for the MC to evade capture (assuming that’s what the OS is about).

Do you know what your First Driver is? That can often help figure out the Goal.

Using Subtext terms,

  • Initial driver is arrest of her family (she starts a search),
  • First Plot Point (PP1) is getting trapped.
  • Yadayada 2PP
  • Yadayada 3PP
  • Concluding Story Driver is Safety.

Okay, simply said, the MC is a protagonist, not an antagonist (yet). The story wants her to be safe.

1 Like

It sounds to me like “find my family” is the OS Goal of the series, and “survive right now” is the OS Goal of the first book.


Definitely saving the family happens in the trilogy climax. But does “obtaining safety” actually fall under the goal Obtaining? Rescuing oneself seems to be obtaining.

The answer to this is probably “Yes.”

But in a lot of ways, blowing up the Death Star looks like Obtaining too and it’s Doing, so I don’t want to give you a solid answer when I don’t know your story. I can see how it could be something like “In order to become a protective father, a man takes the responsibility of giving up his children’s freedom by selling them to an interstellar labor union” which is in Psychology.

I guess my point is that Dramatica is really a theme-based model and I don’t know your theme.

1 Like

Sounds like an OS domain of Manipulation to me.

1 Like