You’ll have heard it said, Gentle Reader, that there are only seven plots in the whole wide world when it comes to stories, from Greek myth to fairy tales via opera, novels and cinema. And they are, approximately:
Tragedy – in which the villain’s fall from grace is a happy ending e.g. Carmen
Comedy – the resolution of some conflict in which confusion gives way to clarification and recognition, paving the way to reconciliation and celebration e.g. Four Weddings and a Funeral
Overcoming the Monster – in which we set out to defeat those who threaten us or our homeland e.g. James Bond
Rags to Riches – in which we win power, wealth and a mate, only to lose it all again, gaining it back upon growing as a person e.g. Cinderella
The Quest – where we set out with a goal, encountering temptation and obstacles along the way – e.g. The Wizard of Oz
Voyage and Return – where we set out for a strange land, overcome threats and return only with experience, older but wiser – e.g. Gone with the Wind
Rebirth – in which the villain redeems himself over the course of the story – e.g. Despicable Me
So, here’s the game. If your business story was to fit into one of those seven plots, which would it be and why?
Although mine has elements of many, specifically Rags to Riches, The Quest and Voyage and Return, I am going to settle for Comedy and not because it makes me laugh, because it doesn’t. In fact, often it’s made me cry as much as anything. Cry with frustration and impatience about what one woman can do, mostly on her own. And I’ve certainly experienced conflict, confusion, clarification, recognition and reconciliation. But more than that, it is my intention that celebration is my end goal and not so very far off either.