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The Bump-Slide Patterns
Posted: Dec 02, 2015 4:10 am
I had question in reference to pages 136 to 145 in the Dramatic Theory book and how it is applied in the Dramatica Pro 4 Software using the plot progression tool.
When I read the book, I get the idea that I can arrange the plot types as I see fit to tell my story going from sign post to sign post fulfilling each of the acts and in doing so the patterns would naturally show up.
However when I go implement the plot types in the order I desire using the plot progression tool, I notice the software limits my options as I go along and assumes configuration choices for me.
For example in a story I am developing now I desire to use this configuration:
OS Throughline: Activity
Desired Plot Configuration: Doing, Obtaining, Gathering Info and Understanding
SS Throughline: Manipulation
Desired Plot Configuration: Conceiving an Idea, Developing a Plan, Playing a Role and Changing One's Nature
MC Throughline: Fixed Attitude
Desired Plot Configuration: Impulsive Responses, Innermost Desire, Memory and Contemplation
IC Throughline: Situation
Desired Plot Configuration: Present, Past, Future, How Things Are Changing
The plot progression tool won't let me choose this configuration.
Please help me to understand what I am not seeing about how the patterns work.
Re: The Bump-Slide Patterns
Posted: Dec 02, 2015 7:02 pm
I did some research in attempt to figure this out. I looked at an article in the Dramatica Tips and Tricks PDF called, "Illegal Plot Progressions" and gained some insight. At the most high level it boils down to being consistent between throughlines. Also from I what I gathered is the Dramatica is K-based theory given to the needs of Western Culture. However I bet I could get my desired plot progression if there were D-Based or an A-based theory developed.
There is another article in the same PDF titled, "What determines plot progression sequences", which used the rubik's cube analogy.
I was thinking that as long as the four areas of plot were represented in the signposts in each act, then what difference would the order make, but apparently the order is big deal to maintain a form of congruency between the classes, types, variations and elements as how they interact with each other.
Any other insight is welcomed.
Chart of James' story showing Bump-Slide Pattern
Posted: Dec 10, 2015 3:05 pm
Ah, story version of Pathophysiology.
Hey James, I made an anatomical chart to illustrate your story:
From doing this we notice a few things (physiology):
1. Each arrow head ends at a different corner box and all 4 boxes are utilized.
2. A 'slide' is always first and last-in every single case.
3. Each line never starts on the left sides of the boxes.
4. Your Main Character's Throughline and your Objective Story's Throughline both start in the same place and move to the same spot #2.
5. Your Impact Character's Throughline and your Subjective Story's Throughline both start in the same place and move to the same spot #2.
6. Your Situation and Activity Throughline's are a quarter turn off of one another. Same thing with your Manipulation and Fixed Attitude throughlines.
Two of your throughlines carry more weight (this is built into the software). They (the two throughlines) then are favored. You chose those and the others were chosen for you. FYI, the Main Character Throughline and the Objective Story Throughline get the favoring.
The Story version of Pathophysiology (what your story is doing when your story is not working the way ya' want it to):
Your story has weird bumps and slides that you don't like.
Change your Main Character. Go back and change your Main Character's: Resolve, Growth, Approach, Mental Sex, Driver, Limit, Outcome, and Judgment and the bumps and slides will change. Make sure that before you go and change all those/some of those that you save your initial work under a different file name. "JamesStoryv1" "JamesStoryv2", etc. Then go take a look at your bumps and slides.
Change your Objective Story Throughline and choices and the bumps and slides will change. Same as above-go back and change the Objective Story Throughlines and the bumps and slides will change.
The issue is that you don't like the way your plot is progressing, right? You don't like the WAY the storytelling occurs. Change the OS Throughline or the MC Throughline. Make a compromise.
If you are writing a TV series, it's okay to switch up the Throughlines. The audience is going to be into specific characters anyway, they'll like it. Al Bundy can't come home from the shoe store at the mall everyday and the episode be about his miserable life from his POV. At some point there's gonna be an episode about Steve, Marci, or the dog.
Posted: Dec 10, 2015 3:55 pm
Here's a blank Throughline Classes Choices Assignment chart I made to help me. Right click on it to save it, save it as "Blank", and then open it with "Paint". Then assign things as you see fit.
Re: The Bump-Slide Patterns
Posted: Dec 11, 2015 3:17 pm
The bump-slide-bump and other patterns are there to let you understand the effect of the story patterns found within storyforms. The section in the theory book is informational rather than instructional. You can look to the Theme Browser to get a sense of the patterns but the software does not indicate them visually, nor does it allow you to select them per se. You can choose the Signpost orders, but usually on a couple because they are so interrelated that making temporal choices have many connections to most everything else in the storyform.
Re: The Bump-Slide Patterns
Posted: Dec 13, 2015 4:51 pm
Thank you Adam!
Thank you Chris!
I appreciate the blank form. I have already put it to use.
I have made changes to some of the options in the story engine but I think for now, I am going to put this story aside and come back to it later when my Dramatica skills improve.
I have another one in mind I am working on just for the purposes of learning and I want to post it later to get your feedback to gauge myself if I am interpreting Dramatica system correctly. I purchased Armando's book and its giving me some great insights. I really like the exercises he suggests.