What makes a good story?

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What makes a good story?

I think about this on and off whenever I come across a best-selling novel, popular TV show, or movie that I don't like—or when I stumble upon a fantastic gem of a story in any of those. There are plenty of theories about what makes a great story, popular ideas such as conflict, tension, surprise, well-developed themes, engaging plot, memorable characters, and so on. I don't think it's any of those, and I don't think there's a magic combination either.

I think it's about connection. Each story that's ever existed has the potential to connect with someone on some level. That's really all there is to it. Perhaps there's a story that connects in some way with millions of people, making them fans. Or perhaps there's a story that connects with only one person on the planet, and that person becomes a fan. From an artistic standpoint, they've both succeeded. The artist has created something that speaks to another person.

From a commercial standpoint, one is a massive success, and the other is a gigantic failure. Not every person who creates does it for commercial success, though. Every creator should ask themselves, "Why do I create?"

For me? I've got stories to tell. The ones I've already told have deeply connected with some people. That has been motivating for me—inspiring in a way—to keep on telling stories.

What's New?

  • The next part of Absolution is now live!
  • ACX finally sorted out the account weirdness! So, I was able to submit the audiobook for Night of the Living Cake Monsters. It's in review right now. With my friend Eva's cosplay and the audiobook complete, I've been thinking about other exciting things I could put together.