jaime: (Default)
2010-01-02 06:26 pm

fun with the hero's journey

I made a resolution to post over here on a regular basis, with the purpose I initially intended it for - a writing and reading and general public life blog. But mostly writing and reading. I have another resolution to finish the first draft of my novel by the 4th of July (okay, by CONvergence, but same difference), so I'm also going to use this journal to keep myself accountable. So, expect weekly word count updates once I return from vacation in a couple of weeks!

Tonight, though, I'm going to have a little fun. I just finished re-reading my copy of Christopher Vogler's The Writer's Journey, and I find myself in the mood to analyze one of my recent TV obsessions in the same way he's used the Hero's Journey to break down successful Hollywood films. Why? As an exercise to see how well I recognize the various points of a story, and just because I love the Hero's Journey a whole lot. I love the way it maps onto nearly every story, even ones you wouldn't expect. My favorite stories are ones that take these mythic archetypes and twist them to fit modern sensibilities, putting characters you wouldn't expect into roles they don't seem to fit on the surface, creating plot twists that seem random on first reading/viewing, but are perfectly logical in the context of the journey when you look at the story as a whole.

Anyway. I recently watched and loved SyFy's miniseries Alice, a modern take on Alice in Wonderland. (If you haven't seen it, get the DVD when it comes out in March! It was silly fun, with a whole cast full of character actors having the times of their lives.) And since Alice's journey to Wonderland makes an easy parallel to the Hero's Journey, it's a pretty easy story to map. ... and through the looking glass we go )

Like I said, I'm fascinated by the archetypes in the Hero's Journey. Analyzing someone else's story gives me a better idea of how to apply some of those archetypes in my own work. Which I should probably get back to, eh? July 4th isn't that far off, in the grand scheme of things!