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Goal, Motivation & Conflict

I thought I'd start my blog by talking about one of the best books I've read on the craft of writing. “Goal, Motivation & Conflict” by Debra Dixon. I had seen this book mentioned so many times in articles and other books that I finally bit the bullet and bought it–a decision I will not regret.

Understanding GMC will help me with my query letters, the dreaded synopsis, and, of course, crafting a story that can stand up to 300 pages of prose. Making sure each major character (and even the minor ones, if you want) have a clear goal, a reason for wanting that goal, and something keeping them from getting it, is key. The concept seems so simple, and yet it's incredibly powerful.

I've decided to figure out the GMC for the hero and heroine of some of my favorite books by other authors in hopes of gaining insight into what successful authors do. After applying the method to my own work, some issues that I'd been struggling with became clear.

I'd like to know if GMC has helped you solve a problem or find a new direction with your own story.

Happy Writing!

Tell your friends!


  1. Christine


    GMC totally helped me with my writing. I read Deb Dixon’s book and used it to shore up my third MS. It’s a keeper on my shelf. Now I need to take it and a hatchet to my fourth MS…

    Stay tuned!

  2. Pingback: My Aha! Moment with GMC & BIF « The Edited Life

  3. Christine


    I know–I am going through the same process now with BREAKING INTO FICTION. Moments of inspiration are pinging about the brain.

    Really need to hone down the arcs and growth for my peeps.

    I love GMC-that book is my best friend–

  4. Pingback: Did I dazzle you? « The Edited Life

  5. Reply

    Hm this does strike me as a good idea, for my next writing piece I might try this instead of, or perhaps in conjunction with, my other style, especially considering the striking similarities. Thank you for enlightening me!

  6. Pingback: Conflicted « The Edited Life

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