Archives For Stories

Ira Glass is the iconic voice of American public radio program This American Life. The program first debuted in November 1995 and since its very first episode Glass has served as both the show’s host and executive producer.

In this four-part video series Ira Glass discusses the building blocks of a great story, how hard it can be to find a decent story, good taste, and the common errors that beginners make.

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Once Upon a Time
In 2012 Pixar Story Artist Emma Coats tweeted 22 storytelling tips using the hashtag #storybasics. The list circulated the internet for months gaining the popular title Pixar’s 22 Rules of Storytelling. We reposted this list two weeks ago and the response has been phenomenal with thousands of likes, shares, comments and emails.

Since posting the story, a number of people have contacted us regarding rule number 4 on the list, also know as ‘The Story Spine’:

Once upon a time there was ___. Every day, ___. One day ___. Because of that, ___. Because of that, ___. Until finally ___.

Reports were that this tip did not originate with Pixar but instead with writer/director/teacher Brian McDonald. Intrigued, we contacted Brian to find out more. He replied as follows:

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What comes first, the words or the pictures? When does he get his ideas? Why does he make picture books? How does he get started? What tools does he use? And, most importantly, what does he have for lunch? Oliver Jeffers, the talented and charming creator of How to Catch a Star, The Heart and The Bottle, The Great Paper Caper, and The Hueys shares all this and more in his new author film.

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Pixar's 22 Rules of Storytelling
These rules were originally tweeted by Emma Coats, Pixar’s Story Artist. Number 9 on the list – When you’re stuck, make a list of what wouldn’t happen next – is a great one and can apply to writers in all genres.

  1. You admire a character for trying more than for their successes. Continue Reading…