Saturday, September 13, 2014

The Seven Ancient Story Archetypes


They say all stories can be divided into seven archetypes.  Have you analyzed which archetype your story is using?  It will help you to see if perhaps you are being too cliche in your writing.  It can also help you to decide if your characters are acting believably and in "character."  It can even help you create a new story.  Here are the seven archetypes.

1. Hero's Journey:  Example- Luke Skywalker.  A hero must save the world from certain disaster.

2. The Quest:  Similar to Hero's Journey.  A Protagonist travels and overcomes obstacles to obtain a desired object or treasure that will help mankind or his family.

3. Overcoming the Monster:  The hero must fight monsters to protect the innocent.  (David and Goliath)

4. Rags to Riches: Stories that tell of one character's struggle to overcome poverty or prejudice and achieve his dream.

5. Re-birth:  (Think Dr. Who)  1.. Hero threatened 2. Must fight 3. All is lost 4. Hero does an about face that saves the day.

6. Voyage and Return-  Going from innocence to wisdom. (Think Narnia)

7. Tragedy- A tragic flaw or moral flaw that causes disaster for the protagonist and his family.

8. Comedy- Characters thrown into bewilderment and having to resolve their issues in a comic way after it goes to the extreme.

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