Writing Course

by James Bonnet Walt Disney and his team, the creators of Pinocchio, knew how to tell a great story. They knew how to use the creative process to create metaphors that make a compelling psychological connection and bring powerful hidden truths to the surface. This is why their classic animated films were so successful –… Read More

I’ll begin with a description of our central characters. The lower self controls how we selfishly compete with each other to survive in a competitive, dog-eat-dog, big fish eat little fish world. The higher self controls how we live together in perfect harmony in groups that internally behave unselfishly and are guided by the collective… Read More

by James Bonnet In previous story course articles, we saw the love interests who help lure the hero and the antihero (the conscious archetypes) into the adventure; the tricksters who goad the conscious archetypes forward when they get stuck; the threshold guardians who test their preparedness and resolve; the negative physical mentors who try to physically… Read More

by James Bonnet At the dawn of World War II and the catastrophic assault of Europe by Adolph Hitler and his Nazi German blitzkrieg, the Duke of York, who had a severe stuttering problem, would soon become King George VI of England, due to his older brother’s sudden abdication. Because of the coming war, the… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous story course article, we talked about the anima and animus (the loves interests) in a great story. In this article, we’ll talk about the trickster and the threshold guardian, which like the anima and animus, have a male and a female aspect which can be either positive (supporting the… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous two story course articles, we looked at The Marvelous and Terrible Elements, the things without which the hero or the antihero could not complete their passages, and prior to that we began our introduction to: The Character Archetypes and Major Players of a Great Story. In this new sequence of articles, we… Read More

by James Bonnet The terrible and marvelous elements are the things without which the problem could not, or would not, have been created and the things without which the problem could not have been solved. Understanding and utilizing these important story components can help you make the problem in your story both dramatic and powerful. In real… Read More

by James Bonnet Individual consciousness passes through the same archetypal stages of development that marked the history of human consciousness as a whole. The stages begin and end with the symbol of the Uroboros, or tail-eating serpent;  the intermediary stages are projected in the universal myths of the World Creation, the Great Mother, the Separation of… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous story course article I talked about how to create a great threat and how to make that threat powerful, fascinating and unique. In this new story course article, we will discuss the real cause of the problem and two important patterns that can help us set the stage for our exploration… Read More

by James Bonnet In the two previous story course articles: The Threat and the Essential Elements of Story and The Threat and the High Concept Great Idea, we saw that the threat is not only the cause of the problem that brings the story into being, it is the force that creates the components that constitute the very… Read More

by James Bonnet If your project is going to be sold to, or financed by, a major film production company or book publisher, then the idea behind that project not only has to be intriguing, you have to be able to describe it in just a few words. That way it can move easily through the… Read More

by James Bonnet Two other important Golden Paradigm story structures, that are closely related to the problem and the threat, are The Scourge Being Avoidedand The Value Being Pursued. The scourge being avoided is the essential ingredient of the problem being created by the threat. And, in the real world, we are anxiously trying to avoid these scourges – scourges… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous story course article, I talked about the role of the problem in a great story, its enormous potential power and its incredible relevance to our lives. The components of the problem are: the threat, which is the cause of the problem; the hook, which is the unique aspect of the threat… Read More

by James Bonnet Taken individually all great stories are about problem solving. Taken altogether, as they are on The Storywheel, all great stories are about transformation. What is the link between problem solving and transformation? Great stories show us how to transform the negative energy that created the problem into higher consciousness. Stealing Fire From… Read More

by James Bonnet In the two previous story course articles – The Creative Storymaking Process and Six Creative Storymaking Techniques – I discussed the fascination that inspires you to create a story and the creative techniques that can help you transform that fascination into a great story. In this article, I will begin exploring the story structures of the… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous story course article, The Creative Storymaking Process, I talked about the important role being played by the creative unconscious self and our positive and negative intuitive feelings. I also talked about the first step in the storymaking process  – the fascination that inspires you to create a great story, novel… Read More

by James Bonnet To create something means to bring something forth, to bring something into being, to fashion or produce something that didn't previously exist. In this case a great story, which is to say – a great novel, true story or story film. The story film is unique in that it is a collaborative… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous story course article, I talked about the Storywheel, which brings all of the great stories together into one grand design that reveals the evolutionary passages that once took us to a very high state of consciousness, and can now help  guide us back to that extraordinary lost psychological Camelot… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous two story course articles I talked about the characters, actions and events in great stories that create the metaphors that reveal the collective wisdom hidden in our DNA and the details of the passages – which in turn reveal the extraordinary things the great stories are telling us about ourselves… Read More

by James Bonnet In the early 70s, a friend and I were part of a huge anti-Vietnam War demonstration marching downtown in Los Angeles along Wilshire Boulevard. Just as we were approaching MacArthur Park, our march was attacked by a large contingent of anti-Castro demonstrators wielding clubs. Miraculously, forty or fifty police wielding night sticks appeared… Read More

by James Bonnet In the previous article I talked about the creative unconscious self, the important role it plays in the creation of great stories and the important role it plays in our lives. In this story course article, I will continue this discussion and talk about the secret language that empowers a great story… Read More

by James Bonnet  “There are four great secrets hidden in this work. And this is the first: The author of the great myths and legends is inside you. And I don't mean that figuratively, I mean it literally. The intelligence and wisdom that created those old, great stories is inside you.” Stealing Fire From the Gods… Read More

by James Bonnet The real key to writing great screenplays and novels is an understanding of story. And the key to understanding story is a working knowledge of the creative unconscious self, story metaphors, a sophisticated story model, and the character archetypes. It would not occur to most people to write a classical symphony without any… Read More

by James Bonnet When I speak of a great story, I mean stories or films that are critically acclaimed and generally acknowledged to be classics. I also mean best sellers, box office successes, and stories that have lived for hundreds or even thousands of years. So I’m talking about stories like The Iliad and The… Read More

by James Bonnet The interest in story is greater now than it has ever been, and – putting aside the entertainment industry, book publishing, and other major producers of story and their consumers – people everywhere have begun to realize just how important story is and the key role it was meant to play in our… Read More

by James Bonnet I am starting to build an online story course on my website and I have decided to share all of this knowledge with you free of charge while this online course is being constructed. The content of this course will be delivered to you first through my newsletter and then posted as articles… Read More