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Now, back to the Journey...

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Last time I talked about the trials and tribulations part of the hero's or mythic journey. But since I was tired I'm not sure how clear I was about how important it is that these trials and tribulations increase so as to increase the tension of the scenes and ultimately leave the hero/heroine in a place where their ideas are changed and they are put in a place where they need to sink or swim. At the end of this they should be on their knees begging for it to come out okay, or swords drawn slashing their way toward the tower to save the princess from the dragon.

Achieving the Quest and Receiving special powers.
This is the pinacle of the black moment and the downside of it. The aftermath directly after the fight. This is the point where the hero/heroine would give up all the things that are dear to them in order to get through the challenge. And realize that by doing so they are getting so much more in return. This is that perfect moment of clarity when they realize just what is important in life.

And that leaves us with...

returning to the mundane life and applying those powers for the betterment of the community.

There is a moment toward the end of one of the Star Wars movies (forgive me, but my tired mom brain can't be certain which one) after Luke has battled Darth Vadar on the catwalk and ended up falling through the tunnel to hang precariously from the bottom with a damaged hand. After his hand is fixed he is distant and a bit disconected. You can see that for him, the battle may be over, but there is much more to dealt with. The look on his face says it all. You know that he has discovered the great horrible truth about his father and he must use that knowledge to continue on with his life. However he chooses.

If you haven't read my book Obsidian... there is a bit of a spoiler ahead.
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But for those who have already read Obsidian, you know that when I got to the end of the book I didn't leave everything in a perfect world. Believe it or not, it was a conscious choice for him not to completely have settled the difficulties with his father. Yes, he's battled his own demons and he's avenged the wrongs. But there was a part of him that I thought needed to remain for him to fix. With the last scene you get the idea that he ready to work on it, but he knows that there are no guarantees. Kind of like real life.

Anyway, that concludes my look at the hero's journey or mythic journey. There are a few steps in between, but this is the basic idea of it. If you look at many classic stories and even movies, you can pick out the elements. Not every story contains all the elements and that's fine. The story is yours. Tell it how you want it to be. Only then, will it be your story.

2 comments:

Helen Ginger said...

Plus, leaving that little bit for a character to work on brings readers back for the next in the series. A lot of what brings a reader back is the desire to keep up with the protagonist, to see what is happening with them, to know what happens next on their journey.

zhadi said...

There's nothing wrong with falling back on Star Wars - it really is the perfect example of the Hero's Journey. Lord of hte RIngs too.

Well done, Teagan!

Midnight, strange mystic hour, when the vail between the frail present and eternal future grows thin.
~ Harriet Elizabeth Beecher Stowe



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