I happened upon a great audiobook entitled, The Hero’s 2 Journeys by Michael Hauge and Christopher Vogler on iTunes. (Also available on CD and DVD.) Renowned screenwriter/teachers Hauge and Vogler deliver a lively presentation examining both the inner and outer journey of the protagonist, referencing popular movies along the way. (They use Shrek as one of their go-to examples, which I love.) It’s based upon Joseph Campbell’s famous Hero’s Journey but, oh, so much more. First, they cover the outer journey—the essential structural principles driving every successful plot; and then they take you step-by-step through the protagonist’s all-important inner journey, distinguishing between his identity and true essence. When the two “journeys” are melded together, it’s guaranteed to take your story to the next level. (Well, they don’t actually offer a guarantee.) Geared mainly toward scriptwriters but novelists will benefit heaps of knowledge as well since the basic recipe is the same. You’ll feel like you’re right there in Hollywood with the rest of the attendees, who undoubtedly paid a huge fee to get into this sold-out event (not to mention dealing with L.A. gridlock) but you get to listen to it at your convenience via your iPod, iPad, or iWhatever—and for a reasonable price. It’s a goldmine of information, maybe a bit too formulaic, but ridiculously insightful and with plenty of solid takeaways. A must have for any fiction writer!
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