Everybody talks about the importance of telling stories. But what is a story?
In its simplest form, a story just needs three things: People, Place, Trouble.
Someone in some place is facing some sort of trouble.
What is a story about?
Every single story ever written or told is about the same thing.
First, a story introduces a hero facing a challenge which will transform him or her in the end. The hero is the connecting element of a story. He or she makes us connect to the storyline, mainly the challenge and its resolution.
This storyline is the transforming, motivating and inspiring ingredient because it introduces the element of change. The hero faces a challenge and must change to overcome it and find a resolution.
The secret to a story is neither the hero nor the resolution, it’s everything in between. The transformation is the key, we love change and we love to be witness to a transformational journey.
So every story is about the same thing: CHANGE.
What is the structure of a story?
A story typically consists of three parts, sections or acts:
- Exposition: the setup, introducing the hero, theme, scene, characters
- Conflict: the challenge that needs to be overcome by the hero
- Resolution: the solution, introducing a vision of the future
The change occurs within all three acts and in the end the hero as well as the audience have been through a transformation that leaves them changed.
What is a good story?
As every story is essentially about change, the quality of a story depends on the strength of the connection we have to the hero and his or her transformation.
A good story creates a strong connection and through its transformation, it engages, motivates, activates and inspires us to take action.
In summary, a good story has the power to change us.
Read in my next post about why you should consider using storytelling as a tool for your next business presentation and why it is important to know that we’re all junkies.