We reviewed episode 9 of Fullmetal Alchemist. Edward is given his first official mission. He has to investigate the coal mines of Youswell.
The following is an episode from my table read podcast. We read the script from my comics. This is from Favor of Athena #2.
It’s All About Your Protagonist, Part 3
Writing a Graphic Novel using Save the Cat
Okay, so your protagonist has problems and flaws that we can relate to or understand. That’s great, but we need something else. Something primal. Your protagonist must WANT to do something in other words. Protagonists’ wants or goals make up the main story.
Batman wants to rid the world of crime after his parent’s murder in an alley. Spiderman wants to be responsible with his power. Luffy wants to find King Rogers’ treasure. Edward and Alphonse Elric want to find the philosopher stone. These popular characters had stories told for years, based on their want. The protagonist’s wants and goals can change over time. Without goals, your audience isn’t going to care about the problems.
The best thing about wants, other than that they can change, is that they give the readers something to cheer for. After all, the want is why the audience came to your webcomic, comic, or manga. The want or goal is something the protagonist thinks they need and that devotion attracts us.
Don’t give your protagonist a weak want. Their goal should be something they feel will vindicate them. It needs to be something so important. Something the audience will buy in too. Look at your protagonist and their problems. Use those flaws and problems to provide a primal goal. Now you can build exterior problems to complicate those goals.
No goals, no story. Period.