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Lansing Community College Library

Beyond the Book: The Hero's Journey/Screenwriting

Beyond the Book 2023-2024

Discussion Questions

  • What elements of the Hero's Journey do you recognize in Interior Chinatown? (see a list of the 17 steps below)
  • Can someone be a hero without facing obstacles?
  • What would be easier for you to write - a novel or a screenplay?

The Hero's Journey and the Monomyth - Crash Course

The Hero's Journey in 17 Steps

  1. Call to Action - the hero is presented with a challenge
  2. Refusal of Call - because of fears or insecurities, the hero is not willing to make changes
  3. Supernatural Aid -  the hero receives information or tools at the start of their journey and increase chances of success
  4. Crossing the Threshold - the hero ventures into a new, unfamiliar world
  5. Belly of the Whale - the first point of real danger in the hero’s journey
  6. The Road of Trials - a set of three tests for the hero to complete
  7. Meeting the Goddess - the hero meets with an advisor, or a trusted individual, who will help them gain a better insight into the next steps of the journey
  8. Temptation - a test where the hero must overcome or avoid temptations
  9. Atonement With the Father - the hero must confront an aspect of their character that has been slowing them down
  10. Apotheosis - an ah-ha moment, a change in world view
  11. The Ultimate Boon - the physical climax of the story
  12. Refusal to Return - the hero decides not to return home after getting what they want
  13. Magic Flight - in attempting to return home, the hero is chased
  14. Rescue from Without - the hero needs rescuing, and receives help to be able to return home
  15. Crossing the Return Threshold - the hero returns home
  16. Master of Two Worlds - the hero can move between the two worlds (real and **) without hurting either
  17. Freedom to Live - the hero has found balance

Description of each step were created using's summary of The Hero With a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell.

Books and eBooks on Writing and Screenplays

Basic Elements of a Film Script for Beginners

Screenwriting Podcasts

Behind the Curtain: How I Wrote The Office