What is the Main Character Problem-Solving Style?

Does your Main Character use a Linear problem solving style (such as Clarice Starling in The Silence of the Lambs) or a Holistic problem solving style (such as Tom Wingo in The Prince of Tides)?

Much of what we are as individuals is learned behavior. Yet, the basic operating system of the mind is cast biologically before birth as being more sensitive to space or time. We all have a sense of how things are arranged (space) and how things are going (time), but which one filters our thinking determines our Problem-Solving Style as being Logical or Intuitive respectively.

Logical Problem-Solving Style describes spatial thinkers who tend to use linear Problem solving as their method of choice. They set a specific Goal, determine the steps necessary to achieve that Goal, then embark on the effort to accomplish those steps.

Intuitive Problem-Solving Style describes temporal thinkers who tend to use holistic Problem solving as their method of choice. They get a sense of the way they want things to be, determine how things need to be balanced to bring about those changes, then make adjustments to create that balance.

To be sure, we can go a long way toward counter-balancing those sensitivities, yet underneath all our experience and training, the tendency to see things more in terms of space or time still remains. In dealing with the psychology of Main Characters, it is essential to understand the foundation upon which their experience rests. NOTE: A character’s Problem-Solving Style need not match its Gender. Problem-Solving Style: A differentiation between logical and intuitive problem-solving techniques.

Linear Problem Solving Style

  • Ripley, Alien & Aliens
  • Clarice Starling, The Silence of the Lambs
  • Hildy Johnson, The Front Page
  • V.I. Warshawski, V.I. Warshawski

Holistic Problem Solving Style

  • Tom Wingo, The Prince of Tides
  • Malcom Crowe, The Sixth Sense
  • Bridget Jones, Bridget Jone’s Diary

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