Signpost order and act turn drivers

Just a quick question, I think I know the answer but wanted to be sure.

The “act turn” Story Drivers only turn the Overall Story from one signpost to the next, right? So they don’t directly affect the other throughlines’ signposts (other than the rule of all signpost #1s have to occur before any #2s, #2s before any #3s, etc.)?

This means, for example, you could have MC Signpost #3 (or some part thereof) come before the story’s Midpoint (aka Third Story Driver), right?

I’m asking because I think I see my MC Signpost #3 “The Past” clear as day (being forced to relive a traumatic past event), and it’s what motivates the Action that is my Midpoint / Third Story Driver.

Note: I just found this thread where there seems to be some minor disagreement about Drivers being OS-only or not, but even @MWollaeger 's interpretation seems like it would still jive with my setup. So I think I’m okay…

If you look at the layout of the software, you’ll see that Drivers are listed under Plot Dynamics and not under the Overall Story. This is because they are part of the structure of the entirety, and not just the Overall Story. (Basically, my stance here has not changed.)

Let me ask the question this way. Do you think the death of Luke’s Aunt and Uncle affect his MC Throughline? Or does he continue to whine that he is stuck on that rock?

Nevertheless, you are free to put part of Act 3 before the driver. Nothing should be taken as a concrete rule that can never be fudged.

Okay, that makes a lot of sense. I think it also jives with what Jim wrote once about how a “perfect” story would have all the throughlines begin and turn their acts at the exact same place, and that each act turn would be exactly 1/4 of the page count from the last one… except that stories aren’t perfect and never can be, we wouldn’t want them to be anyway.

Thanks Mike, you’re always so helpful!

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Well here’s something cool. Your phrase “you are free to put part of Act 3 before the driver” had me considering, geez what part of The Past comes after that Driver? Especially since this is going to be a long-ish novel, there’s no way that signpost is only one event. I racked my brains for a minute, looking at my outline, and came up with nothing. So decided to worry about it later.

Then as I was looking at some Evernote notes I had made while out last night, I had a note about another MC throughline scene: “her mom comes to visit her in prison and shows disapproval for her and what she did, then abandons her” (what she did is the 3rd driver action, that lands her in prison).

Holy crap! That scene will certainly bring up the past… not just directly but her mom’s long history of disapproval can’t help but be part of the sub-text and drive conflict.

Sometimes I swear Dramatica knows your story/intent better than you do (at least consciously)… :slight_smile: