Telling a story

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

The art of storytelling is as old as language.  It is surmised that during the Stone Age that stories of the hunt were shared with the tribe.  Some of these stories are immortalized on cave walls.  What they are trying to tell us is a matter of Interpretation.  The most popular interpretation is that it was a way of insuring that the animals they hunted would return.

Later the adventure of war and heroes of war slowly evolved.  Homer is the most well-known of the storytellers of the ancient Greek age, and has become known as the father of the oral traditions of storytelling.  The legendary tales of hero and Gods of Olympus have been retold and preserved in print, The Iliad (sometimes referred to as the Song of Ilion or Song of Ilium) an epic poem traditionally attributed to Homer, and The Odyssey also attributed to Homer. Along with the Odyssey, the Iliad is among the oldest extant works of Western literature, and its written version is usually dated to around the eighth century BC.

You might well ask why a study of classical writing is an important step for a writer to take.  The format of a good story has never really changed.  This is true even in biographical accounts, and the formula holds true in fiction and epic fantasy, even into Sci-fi.

I personally like to use the analogy of building a house.  Finding a location to build your house is the first thing that usually happens.  For the purposes of building a story one that has a view of the world around it.  The next thing is to lay out a design, or floor plan (A Blueprint) of your project.  The foundation of anything from a building to a story is important, or as in a building a story will fall flat without a solid foundation.

The layout of your house, the shape and size of the rooms, or in the case of your chapters in your story must complement each other, and the layout or story-line, or plot must be capable of back reference or backstory so the reader does not get lost in your house.  As in a house each room as a reason for being there.

Every room in a house has a window or two.  In the analogy these windows are the windows on the world of the story and as in real life much information can be learned by looking out of these windows on the world surrounding the story.

I use this analogy to write my stories and I hope that this will help you write yours.

Speak Your Mind

*