NonFiction ~~- The 10 Commandments Of ScreenWriting

The Initial Sword Clash

Creativity 1124 Characters =~1.1Min. Reading Time
About 1/3 of the way to the resolution of your story, you have a clear, unmistakable clash of swords between your protagonist and antagonist.

This "precipitating act" is like Pearl Harbor: an attempt to finish the war in one crippling blow.
But the powerful antagonist will fight back so hard that the showdown is just getting started.

Dramatic action is not car chases and shootouts.
Dramatic action is that little initial "sword clash" setting off a 'spark' that the audience knows is going to become an 'inferno' of conflict in which one fighter will "survive" and the other will "die."

Create the "sword-clash" between protag and antag early on.
"There's a fight coming!"
Then at about 1/2 to 2/3 of the way through, at the 'point no return,' the fight turns into a winner-take-all, one-man-will-die battle.

Audience sympathy: get it and keep it for your protagonist.
Make your antagonist commit the initial act of aggression.
Then as you build to the climax, make your protagonist trigger the 'point of no return' that leads inevitably to the fight to the finish.
We want our hero to take the lead.