If you're ready to graduate from the boy-meets-girl league of screenwriting, meet John Truby. John Truby is one of the most respected and sought-after story consultants in the film industry, and his students have gone on to pen some of Hollywood's most successful films, including Sleepless in Seattle , Scream , and Shrek. The Anatomy of Story is his long-awaited first book, and it shares all his secrets for writing a compelling script. Based on the lessons in his award-winning class, Great Screenwriting, The Anatomy of Story draws on a broad range of philosophy and mythology, offering fresh techniques and insightful anecdotes alongside Truby's own unique approach to building an effective, multifaceted narrative. Would you like to tell us about a lower price?
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Truby goes around the world giving lectures for how to write a great story and the backbone of these lectures is the 22 steps:. All of these 22 steps will not be in every film. Sometimes it suits the film well, other times it may backfire. For example in The Dark Knight Rises, although Batman has a extensive battle with Bane at the end, he does not fight the actual villain, and so it takes the edge off the film slightly.
The reason this rarely happens is because of franchises. A company cannot capitalise from a franchise if the main character is dead, so although a death would make a better ending, it rarely happens. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account.
You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. Truby goes around the world giving lectures for how to write a great story and the backbone of these lectures is the 22 steps: Self-revelation, need, and desire This is a fairly simple step but important to get right.
Failure to secure all three of these will result in not knowing which direction your story is going. Weakness and need The weakness or problem is the difficulty that the hero has at the start of the story. For example in the film Taken, the kidnapping of his daughter would be the inciting event.
Desire This is what drives the story. Ally or allies Using an ally is a way various scriptwriters define their protagonist. The mystery can also be the unseen opponent. It is also known that detective stories need a mystery as they have a lack of an enemy Fake-ally opponent The fake ally is a charcter in the story that appears to be an ally but ends up being an opponent in the story.
First revelation and decision: Changed desire and motive This is often known as the first turning point in the film and is where the hero receives some new information or makes a decision that taken them in a different direction. Drive The drive is the guideline of the story, the actual steps that the protagonist takes within the plan.
It is very easy to simply repeat yourself for the drive so it is important to take care not to Attack by ally This is also fairly noticable in many films. This is the section where the hero goes awry, steers from his orginial motive or tries to short-cut to get to his desire.
This is usually the section where the hero receives a slap across the face. Apparent defeat Apparent defeat is when the hero is about to give up. When all hope is lost, there is no way out of their predicament. It is the low point of the story where the hero is certain that the opponent will come out victorious.
Second revelation and decision: Obsessive drive, changed desire and motive This is when the hero realises that where they went wrong and decides to give it another shot. The hero has renewed interest in their desire. Thi is typically when the audience learns a piece of information before the protagonist Third revelation and decision This is when our hero learns all they can, making them a more worthy opponent against the opponent and able to beat them.
Gate, gauntlet, visit to death This is typically the last sacrifice the hero will have to make for their desire. The hero may also go through a final test before their battle. Battle The final battle between the hero and the opponent.
This step is in most films made and is a chance for the writer to clearly distinguish what the hero and opponent are fighting for. This is to show who will come out on top Self-revelation The hero finally learns what they have been doing wrong and how to do things successfully. It is something the hero did not understand until that moment Moral decision This is the hero then acting on what they have just learned. The hero must make the decision to do the moral thing.
Truby’s 22 Steps
I purchased one of his first video writing courses mumblety-mumblety years ago when I was writing comedy and spent a lot of time in L. The overall structure is loosely follows the three-act format. You have to be ready to write the sequel. His analysis and breakdown of various movies is well worth the read, even if you are writing genre or traditional storylines.
John Truby’s 22 Steps
At a glance, they might seem oversimplified. March 31, — pm. Your email address will not be published. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email.