Sunday, September 9, 2007

The Journey of a Thousand Miles begins with a Single Step...

I first became aware of The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell quite some time ago. My mother was fascinated by the book and when Campbell was interviewed by Bill Moyers some years after the book's publication Mom watched the PBS series of interviews faithfully. Since Campbell talked about Star Wars and how it followed The Hero's Journey, I was intrigued too. So we had long discussions about it.

In the summer of 1977, I saw Star Wars IN THE THEATER at least ten times. Yeah, Star Wars Geek, that's me. But there was something archetypical about the story and Campbell explained the archetypes in ways that made sense to me.

For some reason though, I was kind of resistant when RWA writer friends told me I just HAD to read Christopher Vogler's The Writer's Journey. I'm not sure what held me back, but I finally decided I should read it so I checked it out from the library via interlibrary loan. I let it sit on the shelf until it was due back, then started to skim the book.

I was caught. It was as interesting as all my friends had been telling me. The other thing was I realized that I used the formula described to write my stories. I hadn't planned it, but I used it nonetheless. And even though it's a formula, just like the hero with a thousand faces, each story is unique based on the face the hero wears at any given trip through the cycle. Sort of like past and future lives...

Now, I want to own the book. Good news, Vogler junkies! An updated and revised edition will be available November 1st, 2007. I've preordered my copy from Amazon.

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