The article The Call to Adventure: A Crucial Hero’s Journey Step in the Beginning of a Story saw first on The Write Practice.

Every great story begins with a “bang!” That bang must be the Call to Adventure, or Inciting Incident, that initiations your hero’s firstly major choice.

the call to adventure

The Inciting Incident is a crucial moment to scheme and write in your narration. It is the first time the book gets to witness your hero’s costs in action. In other utterances, it’s your first chance to establish your story’s core value by showing the book what the superstar is willing to suffer and sacrifice for it.

But not right away. Because after the request, there must be a refusal of the bellow. Why in the world would should your superstar refuse their call to adventure?

Let’s catch out!

How to Start The Hero’s Journey

At this stage, you’ve established your story’s Ordinary World. This is where you clue the book in on the day-to-day chores of your hero’s life. It’s probably boring, everyday stuff. Nonetheless, it’s trash that stands for something, like soul, safe, fidelity, integrity, and so on.

Once this groundwork is laid, it’s time to introduce a bit chaos. That’s the Call to Adventure.

This classic storey opening is in relation to us courtesy of Joseph Campbell, a prof of mythology, who examined hundreds of superstitions in his volume The Hero With a Thousand Faces. Later adapted into a” 12 stagecoaches of the hero” simulate by Christopher Vogler, this mythic structure works for almost any tale with any scheme sort. It is a wild card for anyone on the writer’s journey who is trying to create a bestseller that readers love.

That tell me anything, the Hero’s Journey isn’t just a potent formula for storytelling. It’s a study of the human heart. The only rationale Joseph Campbell discovered this “monomyth” is because he noticed structures across all immense narrations. It seems, he noticed, that all humans long for the same story.

The Inciting Incident is a key slouse of that tale. Academically, the Inciting Incident is easy to describe: It’s the action or deepen that comes your legend vanishing. It’s usually a moment of rapid conflict. In movies, it’s often an act scene.

But the conflict is only half of it. What these definitions wholly misses is the second half of the Inciting Incident, which is its own necessary step of the Hero’s Journey. It is the humanizing step, originating even the most monumental heroes relatable to simple readers like us.

Steps 2 and 3: The Call to Adventure, and Refusal of the Call

Let’s begin by looking at what comes next in a well-written Hero’s Journey 😛 TAGEND

The Call to Adventure occurs early in the legend when the protagonist shall be notified of a threat or need facing the community. The protagonist may be specifically asked to take up the journey, or may respond to the existence of the situation.

The Refusal of the Call happens almost immediately afterward as the hero realise the immense danger of what lies ahead. This “refusal” can take several words, including fright, dejection, attempting to flee, or moronic selections that result in a botched start to the journey.

Let’s explore each of these steps in a little more detail, and then learn how you can easily begin planning each step in your own protagonist journey.

The Call to Adventure

Several weeks ago we explored the beginning of every great story, Step# 1: An Ordinary World with an ordinary, relatable persona( who will become the superstar ).

To begin your hero’s narrative, something needs to push them out of her consolation zone. This sudden propagandize is known as the Inciting Incident. Conflict comes from within, or without, and worrieds the status quo.

Example: The Hunger Games

An example of “from within” would be The Hunger Games. Katniss’s world-wide of District 12 is waiting for the “Reaping,” when participants in the Hunger Games will be chosen. Her moment comes when the inequality of her own macrocosm becomes horribly personal.

Example: Star Wars

An example of” from without” would be Star Wars. Luke Skywalker begins his adventure as a lowly farmhand, curing his uncle prepare some new droids for the upcoming harvest. Then a crew of stormtroopers murder his uncle and aunt, forcing him to make a life-altering choice.

“ The Call to Adventure is the Inciting Incident for your narration. Consider a “wrong” that will throw your protagonist’s nature off course, then hurl it at them. Tweet this Example: Lord of the Rings

The threat can also be two-sided( and often is ). In The Lord of the Rings, the dangers of the Ring rises from inside, as the ancient artillery cries out to its evil ruler, bidding the dreaded Nazgul to attack the Shire.

Example: Toy Story

In Pixar’s Toy Story, the external alter comes in the form of Buzz Lightyear, a new doll that unseats Woody as the favorite trinket. Buzz is not the opposition or Shadow, however; Woody is his own nemesis, at least until the film’s last-minute incidents. He is his own bad enemy, an insecure and watchful commander who must learn how to share the heart of his “kid.”

Dreaming up your Inciting Incident may seem complicated, but it can easily be as simple as asking,” What’s wrong with the world I’m building ?” Then hurl that “wrong” in your hero’s face. Make them feel the brunt of it.

This, in the Hero’s Journey, is Step# 2: The Call to Adventure.

No matter where your conflict comes from, it needs to demand action from your superstar. They need to be put on the spot, having come face-to-face with some form of the world’s ultimate evil.

And here’s the thing.

Your hero cannot simply say’ Yes’ and refute the call.

Your hero needs to fail.

Step# 3: Refusal of the Call

A common mistake of amateur novelists is to create heroes who are too strong. These writers think up ” dominances” and “abilities” and other features to attain the characters “cool.”

But ” cool ” isn’t interesting. Conflict is.

And conflict necessary weakness.

“A story–or a character–isn’t interesting without conflict. And conflict asks weakness.Tweet this

No matter what kind of plot type you are writing, it is imperative that your hero fails earlier today in your storyline. They must face challenges they can’t overcome on their own. Why? Because they’re human( or not immediately gallant) just like you and me.

When your protagonist is experimented for the very first time, they can’t surpasses with flying colors. They need to blow it, goof up, or chicken out. They can’t get it right more. Otherwise the story won’t resonate with your reader’s soul. Readers is a well-known fact that being a hero is hard, and nobody can simply get it on from the get-go

Example: The Hunger Games

Sometimes the outage is small, or internal.

In The Hunger Games, Katniss Everdeen doesn’t take back her entry into the Hunger Games, but she despairs, entreat her family farewell under the assumption that she will certainly die.

Example: Star Wars

And while in Star Wars Luke doesn’t skip out on becoming a Jedi and joining the Rebellion, he regularly complained of how hard it is to learn the ways of The Force, even walk out of here on Yoda in the second film of the triology.

The Refusal of the Call must uncover your hero’s weakness. This weakness should take two fleshes 😛 TAGEND

Physical Emotional/Spiritual

First, your hero’s physical ability to complete the duty must be in doubt. Perhaps they’re not the strongest, the most wonderful, or the most agile. Something about their physical strong required to make the reader wonder.

This psychology is as old-fashioned as human history. All cultures has its David vs. Goliath archetype because the story resonates in our natures. There’s something in our minds that knows that while it’s a trope, it is still capital-t True.

Secondly, the Refusal must divulge your hero’s emotional insecurity. They can’t” have it together” — at least not underneath. They may maintain a adventurous exterior, but the reader must be able to see this for what it is: a mask.

Because this, too, is psychologically true-blue. Whenever we must face a brand-new challenge — a new job, wedlock, parenting, conflict at home, trying weight loss, struggling something enormou — we ever face a crisis of belief. Even the most confident, self-assured person in the world strives with confidence sometimes.

Example: Lord of the Rings

In The Lord of the Rings, Frodo is nothing more than a simple hobbit, hoping to live out his dates in peace and mild adventure within the Shire. Yet when he learns that the Ring of Power is in his owned, and that it must be carried all the way to Mount Doom and destroyed, he is overcome with despair.

He does all he can to give it apart to his instructor, Gandalf, who must refuse the temptation due to the Ring’s danger. In this moment of huge vulnerability, we all can empathize with Frodo’s fear and unwillingness to face challenges so apparently impossible.

Example: Toy Story

And finally we return to Toy Story, as Woody must choose how to handle the unwelcome arrival of Buzz Lightyear. He could share, a difficult challenge even for numerous adults who are still learning how to play nice with others.

Yet he droops under the temptation to get Buzz out of the picture, and done with a brutal ruse. This pick to Refuse the Call to work with Buzz, rather than against him, leads to their expulsion from Andy’s room into the hazardous, new world outside the house.

It is this step of the Hero’s Journey that brings your story and its courages to vibrant, pain live. We’ve all sense called to something greater than ourselves, and we’ve all flunked at such a call.

Sometimes it’s the physical challenges set before us, like hard work, early mornings, late hours, and self-denial that is just too difficult. Other hours it’s the feelings deterrents, like hard discussions, reliving pain traumata, or summon the will to forgive that turn us back before the journey can even begin.

The Refusal of the Call step of the Hero’s Journey is absolutely crucial because it is absolutely human. Don’t miss out on the chance to humanize your hero. Your readers may not notice that you did it with aim( how many of them can truly know all that the writer’s journey entails ?), but they will be inwardly grateful for the cultivate you have done.

Starting with a Call and Refusal

Finding a strong Call to Adventure will hopefully be an easy thing to do. It’s a fun time to write, abounding with fervor, conflict, and controlling tension that gives your story’s core value center stage.

But don’t forget about the equally important Refusal of the Call. Make sure your hero says “No,” ” I don’t know ,” or” I emphatically know ,” and then miscarries miserably in order to learn a difficult lesson.

It’s times like these that explain the Hero’s Journey’s enduring nature. We long for tales that are honest.

Yes, we admire heroes and want to be like them. But more than anything, we want them to be like us.

“We admire heroes and want to be like them. But more than anything, we want them to be like us.Tweet this

And that’s what the Inciting Incident — the Call to Adventure and the Refusal of the Call — are all about.

Can you think of the Call to Adventure and Refusal of the Call in stories you adore? Tell us about them in the comments.


In the last installment of this succession, you originated your protagonist and rectified them in their Ordinary World. Now, it’s time to disrupt that and call them to adventure.

Start by drawing up the Call to Adventure, the moment when your superstar is called to some action( Step# 2 ). Make it clear whether existing conflicts is coming from within( within the hero’s Ordinary World) or without.

Then, spawn the character fail somehow( Step# 3 ). Does he altogether reject the call? Accept it with diplomata? Or believe he is ready, only to screw up somehow?

Take fifteen minutes to write, then share your scene in specific comments below. Then find three other writers’ comments and leave some feedback!

The article The Call to Adventure: A Crucial Hero’s Journey Step in the Beginning of a Story performed first on The Write Practice. The Write Practice – The Online Writing Workbook

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