Hero's Journey (Monomyth): A Period of Desolation

by Kal Bishop - Date: 2006-12-23 - Word Count: 277 Share This!

The Hero's Journey is the template upon which the vast majority of successful stories and Hollywood blockbusters are based upon. In fact, ALL of the hundreds of Hollywood movies we have deconstructed (see URL below) are based on this 188 stage template.

Understanding this template is a priority for story or screenwriters.

There is only one story.

The Hero's Journey:

a) Attempts to tap into unconscious expectations the audience has regarding what a story is and how it should be told.

b) Gives the writer more structural elements than simply three or four acts, plot points, mid point and so on.

c) Gives you a tangible process for building and releasing dissonance (establishing and achieving catharsis).

d) Gives you a universal structural template upon which you can superimpose your situational story.

and more...


Post the Call to Adventure comes the Refusal and the Interdictions. Resistance still often remains post the meeting with the Supernatural Aid and his or her guidance. This period of uncertainty and inertia is known as a Period of Desolation and is an intrinsic and explicit part of successful stories and screenplays.

The Period of Desolation is actually an extension of the Hero's original state of frustration. It is the Hero's destiny to embark on the Journey, to Transform, to be the Carrier of the Changing. By resisting this destiny, the Hero finds himself / herself desolate.

In The Incredibles (2004), Mr Incredible finds himself desolate and frustrated - he is unable to continue in his natural role of SuperHero.

In Star Wars (1977), Luke finds himself looking out at the two suns, yearning for change and to fulfil his destiny.

In Alien (1979), Ripley is de facto desolate when Dallas gives Ash authority over her.

Related Tags: screenplay, heros, journey, monomyth, story, structure, screenwriting, heros journey

Learn more…


The Complete 188 stage Hero's Journey and other story structure templates can be found at www.clickok.co.uk

The Managing Creativity and Innovation MBA dissertation, DIY creativity Audit, Powerpoint presentation and Good Idea generator software can be found at www.managing-creativity.com

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Kal Bishop, MBA


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