Blog PostsCreativityStorytelling & WritingInfographic: 10 storytelling elements

Infographic: 10 storytelling elements

Learn the basic elements of Hollywood-style storytelling.

These are ten typical storytelling elements.

In storytelling, some things just work. Therefore, I’ve distilled the most popular storytelling elements from the basic “Hollywood-style” format in one straight-forward infographic.

Storytelling Elements Infographic

The magical ingredients found in almost all great stories:

10 storytelling elements.

Update: Want to see these storytelling elements applied to an actual story? See Storytelling for Jedi Masters!

The storytelling elements:

1. The Contract

In the very beginning, you have to make a promise. Will this be violent? Scary? Fun? Tense? Dramatic?

2. The Pull

Provide context to pull the audience into your story.

3. The Incident

The event that sets everything in motion. Should occur early and keep the story moving forward.

4. The Reveal

Allow your characters to learn what the story is really about — and what’s at stake.

5. Point of No Return

The forces of good are faced with an impossible decision that concerns fear, safety, love, hate, revenge, or despair.

6. Anti-Climax

Sorry, but you must allow the forces of evil to have an epic win.

7. All-is-Lost Moment

The moment where all is lost. You must portray the deepest despair for the forces of good.

8. News of Hope

A possibility for a side character to shine. A light that shines into the total darkness of the moment.

9. The Climax

The shit hits the fan and the good puts everything at risk but and overcomes — despite impossible odds.

10. The Pay-Off

Public displays of relief and happiness, love, and forgiveness. We also learn that the hero has evolved.

Photo by Kyle Loftus on Unsplash.


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Jerry Silfwer
Jerry Silfwer, aka Doctor Spin, is an awarded senior adviser specialising in public relations and digital strategy. Currently CEO at KIX Communication Index and Spin Factory. Before that, he worked at Kaufmann, Whispr Group, Springtime PR, and Spotlight PR. Based in Stockholm, Sweden.

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