PS-Style as Appreciation of Space vs. Time

Can anyone point to a specific moment in a story where an MC uses time to balance forces? Or how Ida or Kubo or someone is doing this?

This is great. I’ll have to pay attention to things from this angle…

Exactly right. :raised_hands:

In order to appreciate how things are arranged, one must put the concept of time later. There’s a default setting in the linear mind that pauses time.

And conversely, in order to appreciate a process, one has to disregard any spacial factors. They’re just not relevant.


Can anyone point to a specific moment in a story where an MC uses time to balance forces? Or how Ida or Kubo or someone is doing this?

You’re talking about a Holistic Time-Space Success?
Apparently My Fair Lady does this, but I’d honestly have to rewatch to speak to it.

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Thanks for the tip to watch Searching for Bobby Fischer, @mlucas. I haven’t seen it, but sounds like it could be really interesting in relation to these questions.

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Thanks, Greg. I have a busy week too, and it probably will be a bit before I can circle back around to posting a thoughtful response to you.

I think I need to get a better handle of what SpaceTime is in the Dramatica sense. Maybe that’s the missing link to me internalizing all of this.

Light bulbs turning on in my head. Thank you, @MaddyV!

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This is really helpful, thanks.

I think I read somewhere that linear thinkers generally have 1/4 holistic, 3/4 linear minds; and vice versa for holistic thinkers. It’s interesting that spacetime in physics is 3 spatial dimensions and 1 for time (x,y,z,t). A linear approach for sure.

EDIT (got consecutive reply error):

I think there might be something like this at the very end of The Matrix, when the Sentinels are zapping everything and Morpheus is half a second away from pressing the EMP… And Neo is so confident in his One-ness that he completely ignores the ticking clock and takes the time, not just to win, but to humiliate Agent Smith (by taking over his body). Thereby balancing all of his earlier Disbelief with a butt-load of Faith.

MaddyV gave a great answer and much more concise than I ever would have.

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I’m talking about a moment in a movie where it is just baldly obvious that someone is using holistic-time to solve a problem. Where someone observes a process and then changes the process (or relationship) but it’s so obvious that it’s probably actually bad drama, but explicit in this regard.

To be honest, now that @MaddyV has spoken, I think I can just watch with her comment in mind and go from there.

This feels like storytelling to me. But maybe the reason we accept it is because he’s holistic, and it feels right?

Perhaps this is what you mean: what about City Slickers? Mitch in the OS appreciates the processes of his own aging, he sees birth, he sees death. Subjectively, he moves through processes of Mind where he comes to balance his expectations about being upset with the process of aging to determining, or “processing” (read thinking–Conscious, but also just processing) the notion of finding that “one thing” that makes you happy.

None of which have much to do with any sort of spatial relationship or order of things.

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Alright, so thinking about @MaddyV’s statement that holistic = process and linear = arrangement led me to see our whole discussion in a new light.

What if you and I, @Greg, are inadvertently illustrating a linear vs. holistic approach?

Let me go meta on our discussion and try to explain it quickly (before I get back to what am really supposed to be doing in my offline life right now. :slight_smile: )

It seems to me that you are approaching your answers from a how-things-are-arranged perspective. For example, objectively, how do energy and time and mass and space interact? How does time arrange itself? Etc.

I am approaching time and space from a process perspective. All of my answers focus on how time is experienced in the process of being human. Objectively, I know there is much more to it, but I’m looking at the experience of a chair in the corner, or the experience of traveling through time as a human. The “is-ness” I’m talking about has nothing to do with how time is actually arranged, but how it is processed through the human life.

So, what do you think? Are you approaching it linearly and I holistically?

It seems to me that we could go a hundred rounds back and forth like so:

“Time and space are arranged as such.”

“Oh that’s nice, but they are experienced like this.”

“Yes, very nice, but that doesn’t take into account that they are actually arranged like this.”

“True and again nice of you to mention, but this is how they are experienced.”

“Objective arrangement.”

“Subjective process/experience.”

And so on and so on and so on! I’m sure you are aware that a chair in a corner is experienced as an “is-ness there” in everyday life. And I’m aware that objectively, this chair in space is an arrangement of space and mass and energy, etc., etc. and more than than how I process/experience it as a human.

So what do you think? Are we approaching space and time through two different lenses? And prioritizing one over the other?

(Full disclosure, every “left brain/right brain” test I’ve taken from childhood through adulthood has put me 50/50. So I like to think I can go holistic or linear as needed. :slight_smile: )

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Maybe, “…mass and [potential] energy…”? It seems it is waiting to be used.

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@Prish, another linear mind making sure I get all the building blocks arranged in the right places? :grinning: I love it! I really just threw this out as an example. My apologies if any of the blocks landed on their sides. :smiley:

I see it so clearly now. Linear thinking is really concerned that everything is lined up correctly. It is space. I am solidly converted.

Any other holistics on here? :slight_smile:

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Yes, I think I am mainly holistic. Interestingly, I am also ADHD which apparently comes with time blindness but to me makes it feel like time is very elastic. I manipulate time by procrastinating until the pressure to not let anyone down outweighs my perfectionism. I tell my son ‘no tv until 4 but dont look at the clock because it makes time go slower, if we go to the park, we can speed up time’. I get into hyperfocus and do 3 days work in one 5 hour session of intense focus (which feels like a few minutes). I was very influenced by my dad’s philosophy that a task takes as long as the time you have for it (like a gas filling a container), and by being so painfully bored that time seemed to slow down.
I think those are all holistic appreciation of time? But I cant get my head around this.

Can anyone point to a specific moment in a story where an MC uses time to balance forces? Or how Ida or Kubo or someone is doing this?


I think Ida does it all over the movie, but for me one scene in particular does what you’re asking. The story can be seen as Order vs Chaos (Monastery Life vs Secular Life), but I think the whole movie more specifically shows a secular conception of time vs Ida’s experience of eternal time with God and the monastic life. I’m not sure whether that lines up with the Dramatica version of linear vs holistic being pretty brilliantly explored in this thread -

-but see if this makes sense:

Ida’s Aunt Wanda tests Ida’s Christian purity in a number of ways, but most of all wishes Ida would allow herself life’s sensuous pleasures. Before Ida returns to take her nun’s vows, she gives her aunt’s version a try. The morning after, the sax player asks her to come with him to another town for his next gig. “We’ll walk on the beach.” “And then?” she asks. He spools out a string of possible dates and such leading to marriage. “And then?” she asks again.

I think what she’s doing is testing his version of time (and her aunt’s), as a series of isolated events in the world - maybe weighing out his idea of a life for herself. And to her, it comes up empty against her experience of every day as eternal time with God. (sorta the way Dramatica storypoints are described as existing at all moments in the storymind at once).

Does that make sense as linear arrangement vs holistic process? Or more likely in some way of looking at it but not quite the way I’m parsing it badly?

Way better to see the movie, but the transcript of the scene’s English subtitles is here - starting at “What are you thinking about?” and ending on the second page.

But WAAAY better to watch the whole gorgeous movie.


So glad I was able to help! I spent a lot of time reading Melanie’s stuff about how she and Chris came up with Dramatica theory and for anyone who wants to really understand the foundation of it, I super recommend doing so (most stuff is free). Though, honestly, I would have been lost in some places if not for some of Jim’s articles that kind of became the glue for the harder to understand concepts. It really came together for me with Subtext.

It’s a generalization, but probably mostly the case! It’s probably extremely unusual to find someone who exclusively thinks in ONLY one way or the other. Re: spacetime - yes, this is expounded upon a ton in Melanie’s books and articles, but there’s a reason why a story needs to be Linear in order for audience reach to be more “mainstream.” (At least in Western stories. It’s mentioned in a few places and on these forums too, I think, that Holistic stories may be more common in other cultures for a variety of reasons.)

Haha! I was kind of thinking that actually! I’ve noticed this tends to happen when discussing holistic and linear mindset, unsurprisingly. It’s actually really interesting to see how it works in realtime. As far as being able to “go linear or holistic,” anyone can, I think. But typically (and this is reflected in Dramatica theory) it’s harder for Linear thinkers to empathize with a fully Holistic concept (back to Linear stories having full Audience reach, while Holistic stories won’t) than it is for Holistic thinkers to empathize with Linear concepts. Generally. It’s not like it’s impossible.


Would that be in a timelock? (don’t know, just asking)

I do notice that when one chooses MC style in the story engine, there are no other changes that happen automatically. The storyform possibilities stay at 16384. I was wondering if the MC has holistic then does the IC automatically have linear, and visa versa. (and is creating a timelock a Style tool to get an agenda, etc.) However, there is nothing happening with the IC in relationship to style choice. So perhaps the Style choice is a tool for our writing, how to structure the words.

This is a discussion about Holistic & Linear thinkers. Timelocks don’t come into it.

Would that come into play with the films, Rebecca and Manchurian Candidate? There is that dramatic shift in the last part of the movies with realignments of activities and MC focus, once the true nature of what was really going on becomes revealed.

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Since every Grand Argument Story has a representation of Holistic Thinking, it probably happens in every good movie, though not necessarily in such a way that it can be excised and analyzed.

Practically by definition it’s going to happen in movies like Rebecca and The Manchurian Candidate because the MC is Holistic.

Where I’m asking for help is with a specific example, like this, which I think is terrific:


A little bird tells me @MWollaeger has more to say about Ida but the rules of this discussion board don’t allow posting twice in a row. Please excuse this purely functional post in order to facilitate further discussion… :grin:

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