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Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
Story and Meaning
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Story and Meaning

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  • 1. Stories and Structure by Joan Vinall-Cox
  • 2. Story Basics <ul><li>Why stories are powerful </li></ul><ul><li>Story patterns </li></ul><ul><li>Story rhythms </li></ul>
  • 3. Bred in the Bone <ul><li>We humans create stories </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It’s how we think! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Like seeing images in an ink-blot </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>We link events into a plot </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>We organize what we perceive to create </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>meaning </li></ul></ul>
  • 4. Psst! Did you hear about… <ul><li>Gossip, news, the spin … </li></ul><ul><li>Scientific formulas, math equations </li></ul><ul><li>ALL are STORIES </li></ul><ul><ul><li>with implicit or explicit plots </li></ul></ul>
  • 5. The Plot Sickens… <ul><li>Chronicles vs. Plots </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Chronicle </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A list </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Plot </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Beginning (The Set Up) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Middle (Where Significant Change Occurs) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>End (Definitely Different) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  • 6. What is a Story ? <ul><li>The difference between a story and a chronicle </li></ul><ul><li>is cause and effect </li></ul><ul><li>A chronicle is a list of events </li></ul><ul><li>A story has a plot – a pattern of cause &amp; effect </li></ul>
  • 7. A Chronicle <ul><li>The queen died. </li></ul><ul><li>Then the king died. </li></ul>
  • 8. A Story (with a plot) <ul><li>The queen died </li></ul><ul><li>Then the king died of grief! </li></ul><ul><li>Two actions united by answering the question Why? </li></ul>
  • 9. All stories have plots <ul><li>With a story, the viewer wants to know the causes – </li></ul><ul><li>why? </li></ul><ul><li>who? </li></ul><ul><li>what? </li></ul><ul><li>and maybe when? </li></ul>
  • 10. What is a Plot? <ul><li>A plot is a blueprint of human behavior </li></ul><ul><li>A plot is made up of patterns of feelings and actions </li></ul><ul><li>A plot makes connections, makes events meaningful </li></ul>
  • 11. Plots &amp; riddles <ul><li>Essentially plots are </li></ul><ul><ul><li>riddles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>mysteries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>a game played between audience &amp; writer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>with clues </li></ul></ul>
  • 12. Story Structure <ul><ul><li>the dramatic structure is powerful! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The story rhythm </li></ul></ul></ul>
  • 13. Aristotle said it first! <ul><li>No serious disagreement since Aristotle wrote about Drama over 2000 years ago </li></ul><ul><li>There is a story rhythm! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>First act = ¼ of the time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Second act = 1/2 of the time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Third act = ¼ of the time </li></ul></ul>
  • 14. Rising Action &amp; Turning Points <ul><li>A story can be diagrammed </li></ul><ul><li>Act 1 Act 2 Act 3 Climax &amp; </li></ul><ul><li>Set up Transition Resolution </li></ul>
  • 15. Story Rhythm <ul><li>Not only for the whole story </li></ul><ul><li>For each sub-plot </li></ul><ul><li>For each individual scene, too </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Probably innate too </li></ul></ul>
  • 16. Interactive Stories <ul><li>We always bring our expectations </li></ul><ul><ul><li>We choose our favorite plots </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Even with new technology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow the same patterns, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Follow the same rhythms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Games give choices at the traditional </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Turning Points </li></ul></ul></ul>
  • 17. Story Basics <ul><li>Humans ‘ story ’ – it’s innate </li></ul><ul><li>Plot creates meaning – </li></ul><ul><ul><li>perception shapes and is shaped by plot </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Structure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Attention created by the dramatic rhythm </li></ul></ul>

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