Kind of depressing how much I didn't know about telling good stories. All the knowledge is out there for anyone to gather if they would just take the time to find the answers. For me, it took 45 years to decide to look, but as they say, better late than never. For one thing, I didn't know how mean you need to be in order to make good, believable characters.
Outrage Is The Engine
Mickey wants to win, at least once, but sometimes when you lose, you win.
Mickey Is Maligned
You can't diss your main character enough. If we want to read about someone they have to be complex. Give them good flaws:
Horn: "Even his name is a joke. His real name is Felix Ward. His mom is Meskin' and his old man is Irish."
But your main character needs some skills to overcome all the obstacles thrown at him:
Free: "I like horse."
Young: "What's your favorite?"
Free: "Mustangs are a little tough."
Young: "I agree."
Free: "Quarter-horses taste best."
Young [stunned]: "Excuse me?"
Horn: "Yep, he's Irish, all right."
"There is no shame in not knowing; the shame lies in not finding out."
—Old Vaquero Saying