Identification with the protagonist

To heighten the reader’s identification with the protagonist of the story, the writer must create some kind of breakthrough for the protagonist by the story’s conclusion. Either the protagonist has succeeded at attaining his object of desire despite the opposing forces he encountered along the way or he has done the exact opposite- failed miserably, or perhaps his quest has even changed completely. But regardless, the writer must ensure that the protagonist has transformed in some way whether spiritually, emotionally or at least in some way he is a changed person. The transformation is what gives depth to the story and by relating it to a larger issue or theme that many can relate to, it elevates the story from the personal quest of one person to one that is more universal.
At some point of our lives, every one of us faces some kind of journey- from the pursuit of love, to facing the loss of a loved one to the need to know what the meaning of life is and many others in between. Therefore, each of our readers struggles with similar journeys faced by other readers, making the themes of their quests universal. And if we, as writers, are able to resolve some of their questions or perhaps even echo their concerns, validating them in our stories, we will have not only achieved the difficult task of fueling our readers’ curiosity and thereby leading them on to finish the story, but we will have gained our own new insight into what we have learned as writers. And so by our own desire to set out on a journey to transform as we move the protagonist forward, we beckon our readers to identify with our protagonist and we all become connected, transforming one by one, together.

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