Initiation is the second phase of the Hero’s Journey, where the journey really starts to get interesting. This blog post will summarize this phase of the Hero’s Journey, consisting of 4 parts: “The Road of Trials”, “Approach to the Inmost Cave”, “The Ordeal”, and “The Reward”.
The Hero’s Journey truly begins here, and he has a long road ahead of him.
Part 1: The Road of Trials
The hero is now fully immersed in a mysterious new world, and has truly began his journey. There’s no turning back now. This can be both an exciting and frightening experience for the hero. All the rules are new, and he has to figure out the correct path in this strange new world. This world should create a strong contrast for the audience. The Hero will be tested, and new territory will be explored.
Part 2: Approach to the Inmost Cave
By this point, the hero has adjusted to this new world, and is ready to reach into the heart of it. He’s now reaching the very center of the Hero’s Journey, and he will again come across the Threshold Guardians, protecting it. Here, they will have to prepare for a great ordeal. At this point, the hero is about to reach the peak of the story.
Part 3: The Ordeal
The Ordeal is like the climax of the story. The hero is standing in the Inmost Cave, and he must face a fearsome enemy. At this point the hero must show true heroism. This is where the hero is reborn, and he must die in order to do so. In one way or another, the hero must face death (or a symbolic version of death, such as their greatest fear), and recover from it.
Part 4: The Reward
The Ordeal has passed, and the hero must now face the consequences of surviving death. He can now claim his reward for overcoming The Ordeal. The hero should be recognized and awarded for surviving death.
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Categories: Character Development, Story Development Tags: approach to the inmost cave, character arc, character development, character traits, characters, creative writing, departure, different personality types, hero cycle, hero's inner development, hero's journey, heroes journey, initiation, journey of a hero, make a character arc, myforgottenpen a progressive writing guide, mythic structure for writers, personality traits, phase 1, road of trials, the hero's journey, the ordeal, the reward, the writers journey, write, writers, Writing, writing guide, writing help, writing tips
At this point in the Hero’s Journey, the hero is teetering on the edge between the ordinary world, and the special world. He’s crossing the threshold, and he’s about to start his adventure. He has already heard the call, and expressed all of his doubts and fears. Now, he should be ready to move on, and commit himself completely to the journey ahead.
Crossing the Threshold
This is the most critical action the hero will take in the Departure phase, where he illustrates that he’s completely committed to the journey ahead. Even that he may be willing to sacrifice himself to complete it.
Approaching the Threshold
The hero won’t usually charge head on into the adventure right after he’s done meeting with the mentor. There final commitment is usually brought on by some turning point in the story that affirms to the hero that the journey has to be fulfilled. There are a number of things that may trigger this, usually some sort of tragic event. For instance, the villain may ravage the city, or kidnap/kill someone the hero loves.
It may be an internal event that pushes them forward. The hero may ask himself “Can I go on living this way? Or can I risk everything I have for the possibility of change?”
As the hero is attempting to cross, he may encounter beings that will attempt to stop him. These are called the Threshold Guardians. They may show up at any point in the story to try and block the hero from moving forward. Usually, they’re a testing or training point for the hero. Another part of his development.
The hero must figure out how to get past these figures, and continue on. Their threat is often just an illusion, and the hero must ignore them and push through. Sometimes they just need to be acknowledged, and other times, they may become allies later.
This step is where the hero acknowledges that he has reached the border between two worlds. He must take the leap of faith, and go on, or the adventure may never begin. (Or it may result in tragedy, because the hero is afraid to take a deep breath and move on.) The Crossing can be symbolized by a number of things (even a gate, or a cliff), but the audience should sense a notable shift in energy.
After the hero makes his leap of faith, there is no turning back. This action is irrevocable, and he has no choice but to cross his fingers that he’ll land safely.
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Categories: Character Development, Story Development Tags: a progressive writing guide, build your character, character arc, character development, characters, creative writing, departure, departure phase, hero cycle, hero's journey, journey of a hero, leap of faith, make a character arc, meeting with the mentor, myforgottenpen, myforgottenpen a progressive writing guide, progressive writing guide, story, story development, the hero, the hero's journey, the mentor, write, writers, Writing, writing guide, writing help, writing steps, writing tips
This is the start of a series of blog posts discussing The Hero’s Journey. I first brought up the Hero’s Journey in my last blog post concerning the Character Arc, and I thought it might benefit some people to go into further detail about the subject. Note that this is a rather large topic, and I’ll only be able to cover so much of it in this blog. If you’re interested, and you’d like more in-depth information, try reading:The Writers Journey: Mythic Structure for Writers, 3rd Edition.
This blog post will summarize the Departure phase of the Hero’s Journey, which will be expanded into five parts: The Ordinary World, Call to Adventure, Refusal of the Call, Supernatural Aid, and Crossing the Threshold.
This blog article is part 1 of The Hero’s Journey, and will outline the Departure phase. The Departure phase regards the Hero’s Journey before the quest, and it has 5 parts.
Part 1: The Ordinary World
The Ordinary World is all about creating an atmosphere for the story. When the story is still in the Ordinary World, try focusing on the title, the very first image (or opening image), the prologue (if you feel that you need one), contrast, foreshadowing, inner and outer problems, dramatic question, making an entrance, and introducing the hero (which contains many elements in itself.) It may sound complicated, but don’t panic. This is where you establish the story.
Part 2: Call to Adventure
The Call to Adventure has also been referred to as the Inciting Incident, or Inciting Event. This is where the story picks up, and the adventure begins. The Call to Adventure usually occurs as some sort of large event. A messenger, declaration of war, etc.. The elements may include synchronicity, temptations, change, reconnaissance, disorientation/discomfort, lack/need, no options, warnings, or more then one call. This, really, is where the story begins.
Part 3: Refusal of the Call
In this part of the story, the hero responds to the Call to Adventure. Keep in mind that your hero is being asked to say yes to a difficult and unknown passage. His natural response, at first, should be to hesitate, and say no. This is the best way to inform your audience that the adventure head is going to be dangerous. This part of the adventure may include avoidance, excuses, persistent refusal/tragedy, conflicting calls, positive refusal, artist as hero, threshold guardians, secret doors, and questioning the journey.
Part 4: Meeting with the Mentor
The mentor’s service to the hero may include: protection, guidance, testing, training, and providing magical gifts. In this stage of the journey, the hero gains the knowledge and confidence he needs to overcome fear and begin the adventure. This part of the journey may include: hero’s/mentors, sources of wisdom, misdirection, mentor/hero conflict, and critical influence.
Part 5: Crossing the Threshold
The hero now stands at the very threshold of adventure. This is the hero’s most crucial action, beginning the adventure. This part of the story may include: approaching the threshold, threshold guardians, the crossing, and a rough landing.
Categories: Character Development, Story Development Tags: call to adventure, character arc, character development, character traits, characters, creative writing, crossing the threshold, departure, different personality types, hero cycle, hero's inner development, hero's journey, journey of a hero, make a character arc, myforgottenpen a progressive writing guide, mythic structure for writers, personality traits, phase 1, refusal of the call, supernatural aid, the hero's journey, the ordinary world, the writers journey, write, writers, Writing, writing guide, writing help, writing tips