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Teacher Tips and Answers

Analyzing Conflict

Once you know what a character wants, you can think about the obstacles in the way—what the person has to overcome. Obstacles create conflict. You’ll find six basic types of conflict:

  1. Person versus self means the character is his or her own worst enemy or is struggling to make up his or her mind.
  2. Person versus person pits the character against another character.
  3. Person versus society brings the character into conflict with what other people want or think is okay.
  4. Person versus nature has the person fight weather, animals, wilderness, natural disaster, or forces like aging or gravity.
  5. Person versus supernatural sets the character against fate or magic.
  6. Person versus machine pits the character against computers or technology.

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