This from Robert Olen Butler's book FROM WHERE YOU DREAM--The Process of Writing Fiction:

"What we need always to be in search of is the way in which a character's yearning is manifested. Stories are driven forward by causality. All plot comes from the character's trying to get something, to achieve something, wanting, desiring, longing for something. The complications ensue from the drive of those yearnings and the attempt to get around the impediments and difficulties that thwart desire."

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