This post originally appeared on my old blog This Savage Art back in 2005. I was thinking about it recently and I think it still holds true. The following has been edited. We always hear terms like conflict, arc and stakes. A term we don't hear all that often is status. It refers to those who have the most control in a given scene. The person who dominates a scene physically, sexually, professionally, intellectually, or in some other way is in a position of high status. He or she controls the action. Those people he or she dominates are in, you guessed it, low status. Status is based on power and control, not necessarily on expected social rank or class structure.