Step Seven: New Quilibrium

I’m at the end of John Truby’s seven steps to creating a great story structure, as detailed in his book, THE ANATOMY OF STORY. Step seven is New Equilibrium.

Everything returns to normal. All desire is gone. The hero got what he wanted (or, in a tragedy, failed miserably). There’s one difference: the hero has changed, a fundamental and permanent change. Sometimes that change is for the positive and he walks away a better man. Sometimes that change is negative and he realizes that he is incapable of having a self-revelation. In this case, he falls or is destroyed.

In DIE HARD, John has defeated the criminals, saved his wife, and reaffirmed their love. In SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, Clarice has brought Buffalo Bill to justice, has become an excellent FBI agent, and has conquered her nightmares. In VERTIGO, Scottie drags the woman he loves to the top of a tower to get her to confess to murder, then watches in horror as she accidentally falls to her death.

This step is clear, and I doubt you’ve left it out of your POV, but go check, anyway.



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