Case studies are a great way to learn the structure of stories. So, let’s get down to business.
Warning: There are spoilers below. If you don’t want to know more about this story, you should stop reading this post.
Pride and Prejudice
Hook — The character’s starting point. This is the opposite of the Resolution.
- In Pride and Prejudice — Elizabeth Bennet and her four sisters are all single. Their mother’s foremost concern is to find husbands for her five single daughters. So, when a single man, Mr. Bingley, is moving into Netherfield Park in the neighborhood Mrs. Bennet will do everything she can to marry off one of her daughters to him.
Plot turn 1 — The event that sets the story in motion and moves you from the beginning to the Midpoint. The conflict is introduced and the character’s world changes. This is basically when the character sets out on his/her journey.
- In Pride and Prejudice — Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy meet and they both hate each other.
Pinch point 1 — This is where more pressure is applied. This is often used to introduce the antagonist.
- In Pride and Prejudice — Mr. Darcy has broken up the relationship between his friend, Mr. Bingley, and Elizabeth’s sister, Jane. Mr. Darcy then proposes to Jane in an insulting way and she turns him down by telling him all the reasons why she hates him.
Midpoint — The character moves from reaction to action. He/she determines he/she must do something to stop the antagonist.
- In Pride and Prejudice — Mr. Darcy explains his actions in a letter to Elizabeth. It turns out he is a noble man who wanted to protect his friend, Mr. Bingley, from impropriety. Here Elizabeth begins to realize she had misjudged Mr. Darcy and that she has fallen in love with him.
Pinch point 2 — This is where even more pressure is applied. The story takes the ultimate dive. The character is at his/her darkest moment. He/she has lost everything.
- In Pride and Prejudice — One of Elizabeth’s younger sisters, Lydia, runs off with Mr. Wickham. Lydia’s scandolous behavior will certainly ruin the other sisters’ ability to marry well, and Elizabeth is certain that Mr. Darcy will hate her family even more.
Plot turn 2 — Here the story moves from Midpoint to the end, the Resolution. The character gets or realizes he/she has the final piece of information to achieve what he/she set out to do in the Midpoint.
- In Pride and Prejudice — Mr. Darcy helps Elizabeth’s sisters by patching up Lydia’s elopement with Mr. Wickham and reunites Mr. Bingley with Jane. Mr. Darcy does this because he loves Elizabeth.
Resolution — This is the climax of the story. Everything in the story leads to this moment. Here, the character achieves (or fails to achieve) what he/she set out to do.
- In Pride and Prejudice — Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy get married.
Download the FREE Seven Point Story Structure Template to use on your own story!
Hopefully this has helped you see how the Seven Point Story Structure works.