I'm tapping an old ceiling light in the center of the room to power 4 new recessed lights. Can I arrange the new lights in a branch configuration where Light #1 connects to Light #2 and Light #1 also connects to Light #3? Or do I need to run my wires so that the lights connect in a linear daisy chain series L1 to L2 to L3 to L4? Thanks!
You don't have to run power in a "daisy chain," you can branch from one point to several.
With the sketch you have, switched power coming in at L1, and branching out in two directions, you'll probably have no trouble finding a box large enough to accommodate the wires.