Ready to plot your story?
Start your free trial to access 100+ popular goals found in fiction and film, as well as the roadblocks, stakes, costs, and personal impacts that may be associated with each.

Thesaurus Library   


A compelling goal is one of the cornerstones of strong fiction, but conveying why the character is driven to achieve it is what draws readers in and makes them care. Explore all angles of character arc by digging deep into what is motivating your protagonist, the obstacles that could stand in their way, and how sacrifices may play a role if the character is to succeed.

*Dark Motivations: These are unhealthy or negative goals commonly embraced by villains or protagonists pursuing a false motivation (one they believe will fulfill them but ultimately will not).
*Kidlit Motivations: Goals like these are often pursued by children and young adults and frequently occur in stories written for those age groups.

The shortcut for this page is t+m. For a complete list of shortcuts, see our Accessibility guide.