Wednesday, September 15, 2010

What is a Story?

Often people tell me "I've got a great idea for a story!" and I think "uh oh."

"It's about how everyone has personal jetpacks but sometimes they fail."

Voight Kamf causes heavy family dynamics.

"Cybernetic dolphins!"


"What if your house came alive?"

Those might be nice ideas, but they aren't stories. Alex Epstein, whom I've been following since he wrote his screenwriting book on the web back in the day, has a good post today on story.

A story is (a) a compelling character (b) who has an opportunity, problem or goal (c) who faces obstacles and/or an antagonist (d) who faces jeopardy (e) and can win stakes.

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