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Member Only Downloads

Your Big Story Group Membership includes access to these downloads at no charge. Whether you are looking for inspiration or insight, ideas or information, these materials will add dimension to your creative process and story telling methods. (The PDF files will open in another tab or browser where you can read them or save them to your computer.)


[divider]The Hero with a Thousand Faces[/divider]

Joseph Campbell The Hero with a Thousand FacesThe Hero with a Thousand Faces, first published in 1949, is a non-fiction book, and seminal work of comparative mythology by Joseph Campbell. In this publication, Campbell discusses his theory of the journey of the archetypal hero found in world mythologies.

Since publication of The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Campbell’s theory has been consciously applied by a wide variety of modern writers and artists. The best known is perhaps George Lucas, who has acknowledged a debt to Campbell regarding the stories of the Star Wars films.

In 2011, Time placed the book in its list of the 100 best and most influential books written in English since the magazine was founded in 1923.

Campbell explores the theory that important myths from around the world which have survived for thousands of years all share a fundamental structure, which Campbell called the monomyth. In a well-known quote from the introduction to The Hero with a Thousand Faces, Campbell summarized the monomyth:

“A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.”

Download this one page outline detailing the stages of Campbell’s hero’s journey created by the University of California at Berkeley. The download also includes a graph that visualizes the journey. You may also be interested in the download titled “The Memo That Started It All” which features the Campbell journey stages based on Chris Vogler’s guide to Campbell and “The Memo That Started it All”.

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[divider]The Memo That Started it All[/divider]

The-Writers-JourneyIntroduction by Vogler from The Memo: “From time to time people ask me for a copy of the original seven-page memo that was the foundation of THE WRITER’S JOURNEY. For many years I lost track of the original version and could only offer to send people the longer versions that evolved later, or point them to my book, where the memo was embedded in the first chapter, but they weren’t satisfied with these solutions, apparently believing there was something almost magical about that original terse, blunt statement of my beliefs. They had to have the “legendary seven-pager” which I had called “A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE HERO WITH A THOUSAND FACES”, but I was never able to lay hands on the original short version. Until now, that is.

After upheavals of home and office, and sifting through many files and boxes, I have finally come across the raw, original text of The Memo, and I offer it here to you, with the hopes it will have some of the magical effect on you that people attribute to it. But first, I’d like to share some of the context around the creation of this little document.

It was written in the mid-1980s when I was working as a story consultant for Walt Disney Pictures, but I had discovered the work of mythologist Joseph Campbell a few years earlier while studying cinema at the University of Southern California.

‘The Memo’ is recognized for its ‘blunt’ view of story, writing and Campbell’s work and inspired Vogler to write The Writer’s Journey, a must-read book for any creator. Download The Memo and more.

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[divider]The Characters of Theophrastus[/divider]

The-Characters-of-TheophrastusIf you’re looking for a little classic character archetype inspiration, Theophrastus (Greek, c. 371 – c. 287 BC) is your guy. A Greek native of Eresos, he was the successor to Aristotle in the Peripatetic school. He came to Athens at a young age and initially studied in Plato’s school. After Plato’s death, he attached himself to Aristotle. Aristotle bequeathed to Theophrastus his writings and designated him as his successor at the Lyceum. From Wikipedia:

Theophrastus probably accompanied Aristotle to Macedonia when Aristotle was appointed tutor to Alexander the Great in 343/2. Theophrastus, like Aristotle, had composed a first and second ‘Analytic’. He had also written books on Topics including the refutation of fallacie; as well as books on the Principles of Natural Philosophy (Physica Auscultatio), on Heaven, and on Meteorological Phenomena. The work of Theophrastus On Affirmation and Denial seems to have corresponded to that of Aristotle’s On Judgment.

His book The Characters contains thirty brief, vigorous, and trenchant outlines of moral types, which form a most valuable picture of the life of his time, and in fact of human nature in general. They are the first recorded attempt at systematic character writing. The book has been regarded by some as an independent work; others incline to the view that the sketches were written from time to time by Theophrastus, and collected and edited after his death; others, again, regard the Characters as part of a larger systematic work.  Read more about Theophrastus on Wikipedia.

The PDF was created from scanned images and because of the larger file size, The Characters is divided into five separate downloads…the other portions will be added for members-only download in the coming weeks.

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[divider]More Downloads Coming Soon[/divider]

More members-only downloads will be added regularly…visit again soon and discover what’s new.

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