The Periodic Table… of Storytelling?

That’s right. If you’re stuck writing your next bestseller or writers’ group short story, why not consult the Periodic Table of Storytelling?

It’s easy to use. Just choose a few squares that look interesting or familiar based on the column structure of headings.

Under the moniker ComputerSherpa, this web-savvy graphic designer created the piece for his final project in a university course. The creator of the Table even provides a wikisearch link here. There is also a random story idea generator here.

The wikisearch link was created by TV Tropes, who claim they are the key to writing great fiction. Here’s the description from their website:

“What is this about? This wiki is a catalog of the tricks of the trade for writing fiction. Tropes are devices and conventions that a writer can reasonably rely on as being present in the audience members’ minds and expectations. On the whole, tropes are not clichés. The word clichéd means “stereotyped and trite.” In other words, dull and uninteresting. We are not looking for dull and uninteresting entries. We are here to recognize tropes and play with them, not to make fun of them. The wiki is called “TV Tropes” because TV is where we started. Over the course of a few years, our scope has crept out to include other media. Tropes transcend television. They reflect life. Since a lot of art, especially the popular arts, does its best to reflect life, tropes are likely to show up everywhere.”

I’m definitely an advocate of using your own imagination and not resorting to Google and stealing ideas to create stories. This, however, reminds me of a kind of specialised tool for production. Would you use a dictionary while writing? A thesaurus? Well, now you can use the Periodic Table. Who knew?

Hopefully your writing won’t end up as machine-like (and hilarious) as it could.

If you’re really interested, you can also buy a poster-sized wall print for your designated writing area.

If you’re curious about what other bloggers think, you can read their views here, here and here.

One Response to “The Periodic Table… of Storytelling?”
  1. egehlin says:

    Reblogged this on Eric's Universe and commented:
    Here is a great tool for getting ideas for your next great novel or short story.

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