As PR specialists, storytelling is the main task of our career. We are constantly looking for stories, recovering from bad stories, pitching stories, and creating stories. Stories are so effective because they are an easy way to communicate with our audience.
Here are a few components that every great story has:
- Plot. The story must have a beginning, middle and end. Here is a great example of a story arc created by prinyourpajamas. The arc starts with the beginning where a main character and dilemma is introduced, then the story continues on and the dilemma is working on being resolved, either the bad or good outcome is introduced, and the story has a satisfying ending where the main character learns a lesson.
- Hero/Heroine. Every great story needs a hero/heroine who has human characteristics that the audience can relate to. Usually this is the main character through out the story.
- Satisfying ending. No one enjoys a story that has a disappointing ending. Part of a great story is having an ending that satisfies the audience, whether it be good or bad.
While these are great structural elements of a good story, storytellers must master these elements before starting to write:
- Determine who your audience is. The reason for this is because different stories are more appropriate for different audiences. For example, and adult is not going to want to read a children’s book and vice versa.
- Identify character roles. Determine who the hero/heroine and villains are. What are their characteristics? Develop these characteristics before writing a story and be consistent.
- Outline. It is always a great idea to figure out a direction you want your story to go in before diving in and writing. What do you want your audience to leave with? What’s the point of your story? Figure these things out before starting to write.
These are just a few of the many elements that all stories should have. Most importantly, the story should be engaging well-structured.