Whether it’s a review in the New York Times of your d├ębut novel or a Livejournal comment on your fanfiction opus, feedback is universally craved by authors.

However, it also makes us better writers. And my pet editor just returned the first draft of my screenplay, complete with hurried post-commute comments.

He highlighted character motivations as my weakest point, as well as too much talking in Act One (I’ve already added a sword fight in my second draft, because that’s low on chat and heavy on bloody chaos).

For my character motivation, I’m turning to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, as outlined in this article. Blake Snyder also refers to these “primal needs” to drive my plot forward, so I’m in good company.

I’m also going to play a few “tea set” games, as my acting coach once taught me e.g. what kind of tea set does Character X possess? what’s Character X’s favourite meal? how does Character X spend their Saturday? These will hopefully let me get inside my character’s heads more and take on board what they’re thinking.

Now, I just need to make it happen.

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