Note: This is a backdated post, filling in a week during which I was struggling to hit a deadline and consequently forgot about writing anything else. </note>
When we think of Escape as a motive, we often think about escape from a place or a person. A prison break. Leaving a stuffy hometown. Sneaking away from a slaver or evil overlord.
Escape can also refer to freedom from more conceptual elements, such as abuse, indecisiveness, or immaturity. The motive to escape from this physical place and the motive to escape from this toxic relationship feel fundamentally different ("difference in kind," to be addressed later) but are essentially the same thing, just as letting go of a balloon so it floats up into the air and letting go of a rope so you fall down are essentially the same action, though they feel very different.
In this case, the character's motive is to remove himself from the influence or proximity of a specific place, person, situation, or character flaw. Sometimes this can be tied closely to the more obvious motives of Defeat this, Rescue that, and serves as a sort of reinforcement for those things. I'm doing this because it needs doing, but also because I want to stop being the person that I was (escape from the past).
I hope that didn't get too nebulous - it's a little later than I usual write these articles. I'll see you Inklings again next week for more Storytelling Elements. Until then, ponder this:
Random Question of the Day: You have discovered a heretofore unknown plant. You have enough to eat and drink for the next day or two, but will run out soon. Do you test this unknown plant (which seems to grow in abundance here) to see if it's edible, or do you keep looking for something more familiar?