If I understand it correctly, "Complexity" is the "why" part of Desire?

Thomas W. asked: As I see it character/people and plot is so deeply connected as the desire is people but the obstacle or challenge standing in their way of achieving their desire is the plot. The complexity word somehow confused me a little so this is what I write down.

The 3 things to ask and look for in your character

Uniqueness: What is unique about your character, what makes them special?

Desire/goals: What does the character want to achieve, what are their dreams, desires and goals and what are the major obstacles (plot) in their way? Why does the character want to achieve this? 

Passion: What is the character passionate about? Is the character passionate about their desire?

Am I missing something here that would be important? If I understand it correctly then I have used the "complexity" question of "why" as part of my questions under desire.

Hey Thomas, don't worry too much about Plot quite yet since we'll be going much deeper into this, and it will make a whole lot more sense, once you reach that point in the course. For now, let's just focus on People and the Big 3 Things, and I'd say that it helps to break them out into their 3 categories:

1. Uniqueness is what makes this character different. This is what draws the viewer in. And you're right, a good question to ask yourself might be what makes them special? Or how are they different from other people in their role? What stands out about this person?

Let's look at Lek in "The Elephant Whisperer." How many people can say that they grew up with an elephant as their sister? That they were adopted as a part of an elephant's herd? It's certainly different to see a very small woman crawling around so comfortably under giant elephants.

2. Desire is what the character wants. This is what makes the viewer fall in love. You're also right here that some good questions to ask yourself might be—what does this person want to achieve? What are their dreams, desires, and goals? But I would also say that passion falls into this same category of dreams/desires/goals/wants. What is this person passionate about?

So for Lek, her passion and desire was to create a sanctuary for all animals, to protect them from harm and let them live in a happy and safe place.

3. Complexity is the "why" behind the character's desire. This is what sustains the viewer, what makes them really believe and root for the character to achieve their goal. So you're right, this would be more like the question you asked under Desire—why do they want to achieve this? What lead them to this? Why are they so passionate about this, or why does it matter to them?

When Lek was 16 she witnessed elephants being tortured at a logging farm. This memory always stuck out in her mind, in combination with her incredible compassion for living things, and inspired her desire to create a sanctuary where animals could be safe and treated well.

I'd also really recommend that you check out our Recap of the People Pillar. The very last page has a whole list of questions that you can your character in the pre-interview for each of the Big 3 Things, as well as discovering some of their potential plot points.

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