10. Story Around Character
Story Built Around Character
STORY EVENTS DESIGNED TO REVEAL CHARACTER: “To discuss psychology, medieval scholarship devised another ingenious conceit: the Mind Worm. Suppose a creature had the power to burrow into the brain and come to know an individual completely-dreams, fears, strength, weakness. Suppose that this Mind Worm also had the power to cause events in the world. It could then create a specific happening geared to the unique nature of that person that would trigger a one-of-a-kind adventure, a quest that would force him to use himself to the limit, to live to his deepest and fullest. Whether a tragedy or fulfillment, this quest would reveal his humanity absolutely” (374 McKee).
Mimetically, “events in a screenplay are specifically designed to bring out the truth about the characters [especially through their choices] so that we, the reader and audience, can transcend our ordinary lives and achieve a connection, or bond, between ‘them and us.’ We see ourselves in them and enjoy a moment, perhaps, of recognition and understanding. In The Art of Fiction, Henry James says that the incidents you create for your characters are the best ways to illuminate who they are-that is, reveal their true nature, their essential character. How they respond to a particular incident or event, how they act and react, what they say and do is what really defines the essence of their character” (44 Field).
Jung describes the stories we experience through dreams as similarly expressive of our own inner nature and its potential. According to his theory of Individuation, our dreams are designed to help the conscious mind – the observing mind – learn and grow through dream experiences. Over time, dreams guide individuals towards Self-actualization—towards wholeness of Self.