Category Archives: Story Structure

What Is Story Structure?

Most writers are not story theorists, and don’t want to be. Still, an understanding of the way stories work can help support a writer’s instincts to make sure a flawed structure won’t get in the way of the creativity. So … Continue reading

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The Dramatica Triangle

By Melanie Anne Phillips There are two story lines in every complete story, and you can either run them in parallel or you can hinge them together to form a dramatic triangle. The first story line is the overall story that … Continue reading

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The Four Throughlines in To Kill A Mockingbird

There are four throughlines that must be explored in every story for it to feel to readers or audience that the underlying issues have been fully explored and the message fully supported. Throughline 1: The Objective Story The Objective Story is … Continue reading

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How Story Structure Relates to the Real World

  By understanding how the structure of fiction relates to the real world, we can better fashion our stories and perhaps even convey something to our readers or audience that they can use in life. We all sense that stories … Continue reading

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The Hero Breaks Down

Groucho Marx once said, “You’re headed for a nervous breakdown. Why don’t you pull yourself to pieces?” That, in fact, is what we’re going to do to our hero. Now many writers focus on a Hero and a Villain as … Continue reading

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“Things” as Characters

 A writer asks: “My favorite creative writing book is ‘Setting’ by Jack Bickham. Use of setting as primary with characters, plot, theme, mood, etc derived from it and interacting with it seems of particular value in science fiction. Where would … Continue reading

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Secrets of Story Structure | Episode 2 – The Story Mind

Click on the image below to hear episode 2 in this rare recording of a weekend seminar by Dramatica Theory of Story co-creators Melanie Anne Phillips and Chris Huntley in the mid-1990’s just after Dramatica was made public for the … Continue reading

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Secrets of Story Structure | Episode 1 – Introduction to Structure

Click on the image below to hear episode 1 in this rare recording of a weekend seminar by Dramatica Theory of Story co-creators Melanie Anne Phillips and Chris Huntley in the mid-1990’s just after Dramatica was made public for the … Continue reading

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Origins of Story Structure

Imagine the very first storytellers. Actually, what they told would certainly not be considered a story by today’s standards. Rather, they probably began with simple communications with but a single meaning at a time. Even animals recognize a cry of … Continue reading

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How Dramatica is Different from Six Other Story Paradigms

by Chris Huntley I spent nearly sixteen years avoiding reading anything of substance by (Hollywood) story theorists such as Syd Field, John Truby, Christopher Vogler, Robert McKee and others.  As co-creator of the Dramatica theory of story, I didn’t want … Continue reading

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