During the discussion, I realized that all those physics concepts can be metaphorically applied to narrative.
- “Distance” is a measure of change in a particular direction. Not just random activity or events, but action along a particular vector, usually defined by characters’ desires and plans.
- “Time” relates to narratives in two ways: the passage of time experienced by the characters and, probably more important, that experienced by readers.
- “Mass” is a good equivalent for the significance of events, determined mostly by the stakes for the main characters.