Bearing in mind that they are focussed on screenwriting, there's a lot that is useful to fiction writers. Every story, they say, needs:
- interesting characters
- intense conflict
- visual opportunity (using imagination instead of eyes)
- emotional power
Every story has a Major Dramatic Question, (MDQ) which becomes the single driving force of the plot. Example - Will Scarlett win Ashley? That is the MDQ for Gone With the Wind. She fails to win him, but it is still the MDQ.