Will Banse

Story Shape


What does a story look like? What is its structure and form? How can we begin to visualize such a common yet abstract notion? Some thinkers have come up with their own ideas of how they believe one should picture a narrative, i.e. Kurt Vonnegut’s clever graphs plotting the good or ill fortune of characters over time and Joseph Campbell’s famous, circular Hero’s Journey. These two, and a good handful of others interested in storytelling, have mapped out how a story is built, piece by piece. But their visualizations, while a handy place to start, are typically rigid in their application.

Story Shape is an attempt to provide a more freeing idea of narrative visualization. A story doesn’t follow some monolithic formula. Stories vary from culture to culture, person to person, from telling to telling. The shapes of those stories should change just as much. So when someone interacts with Story Shape they are asked to lend their own background and their own experience. They get to decide what a story, their story, looks like.

See thesis book