- Many of you have probably heard of Joseph Campbell's 'Quest of the Hero,' basically the common steps heroes take throughout the story to achieve the story goal. These steps have been applied to such heroes as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars. But, I wonder if similar steps can be applied to the Quest of the Writer/Editor? Some of the steps are listed below as well as how I think the Quest of the Writer can be applied to them (source):
The Call to Adventure
When the writer feels that writing bug ... a story must be told and it is deep within the writer's heart.
Refusal of the CallThe writer may say "I can't write," or "This will be too hard to do."
... but the inspiration is still there and that little muse says, 'You can do this, I will help assist you if you just have a little faith in your abilities."
The Crossing of the First Threshold
The author crosses into unknown territory and embarks on writing the first draft.
The Road of Trials "The road of trials is a series of tests, tasks, or ordeals that the person must undergo to begin the transformation." Applied to the writer, this could mean maintaining the persistence to complete the first draft, editing the thing even when the challenges seem unsurmountable.
Woman as the Temptress "At one level, this step is about those temptations that may lead the hero to abandon or stray from his or her quest, which ... does not necessarily have to be represented by a woman." Applied to writing and editing, this could be any type of temptation to leave the work behind, particularly when it becomes very challenging.
Apotheosis "To apotheosize is to deify." During the writing and editing process we defy the urge to quit, knowing that we are honing our craft and creating art.
The Ultimate Boon "The ultimate boon is the achievement of the goal of the quest." Self-explanatory ... reaching the finished product of our novel, short story, memoir, etc, and feeling proud about it. Perhaps even getting published if you're lucky and persistent enough.
- The Crossing of the Return Threshold
So my questions are, when you go on the Quest of the Writer and complete the Quest, what do you usually learn from it? How do you integrate what you have learned into your every day life, and is the journey more important to you than the goal?
Have a great day!