ABOUT the BOOK
In his bestselling book Into the Woods, John Yorke argues that story structure is hardwired into human perception: all stories are essentially the same because they reflect the way in which we make sense of the world.
What is this deep-rooted story DNA? Put simply, a hero meets their opposite, assimilates it and is changed. Every story, at some level, follows this pattern – whether in a video game, novel or brand story. It’s the natural way that the human brain interprets and organises information.
In Into the Woods, John uses examples gathered over his 30-year career studying and teaching five-act story structure while making film and TV drama watched by millions of people around the globe.
This approach to telling stories forms the basis for all our online courses. John has collaborated with experts in their field to craft practical courses that help people apply a new understanding of narrative to their own storytelling medium – from video games to documentary to corporate communications.
Into the Woods is just not a how-to book for scriptwriters. It is a philosophical approach to communicating more effectively, in a way that resonates with the deepest part of the human psyche – through story.
“Of all the books I’ve read about story construction and the art of fiction, this one is the most comprehensive and concise.”
John Collee, writer of Master And Commander, Happy Feet, Creation, Walking With Dinosaurs
INTO the WOODS
- ‘a convincing hypothesis’ Robert Epstein, The Independent, 6 April 2013
- ‘terrifyingly clever…. Packed with intelligent argument’ Nick Curtis, London Evening Standard, 4 April 2013
- ‘brimmingly insightful, stimulating study of how stories work’ Robert Collins, Sunday Times, 31 March 2013
- Hilarious TV review inspired by Into the Woods, Andrew Collins, The Guardian, 19 March 2013
ARTICLES and FEATURES
- How to write a video game story Polygon January 2019
- All Stories are the Same. The Atlantic January 2016
- What makes a great screenplay? The Guardian March 2013
- Top 10 tips for telling stories The Independent April 2013
- Screenwriting refresher: 10 fundamental things to remember Moviemaker.com August 2014
- One key ingredient every story needs Huffington Post June 2014
- Redeemed characters: how the nation views the monarchy as soap opera Demos 2002
- On drama and morality Speech given at the Bishops’ Conference for clergy in the Diocese of St Albans September 2002
- Who says drama must be grim? Broadcast magazine April 2013
- Interview Flex online June 2012
- Writing for continuing drama Q&A Screen Yorkshire May 2010
“A love story to story – erudite, witty and full of practical magic.” Neil Cross, creator of Luther
A mind blower… an incredibly dense but very readable tome about the art of storytelling. Really worth a read.
The best book on the subject I’ve read.
All script-writers will want to read Into the Woods. All plots and archetypes BUSTED.
I don’t always enjoy books on writing, but Into The Woods by John Yorke is brilliant on story structure.