Rhetoric of Story : Learn the 7 foundations of storytelling.
4.3 (345 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
3,906 students enrolled

Rhetoric of Story : Learn the 7 foundations of storytelling.

Essential writing skills for creative and professional writers.
4.3 (345 ratings)
Course Ratings are calculated from individual students’ ratings and a variety of other signals, like age of rating and reliability, to ensure that they reflect course quality fairly and accurately.
3,905 students enrolled
Created by Damien Walter
Last updated 6/2020
English [Auto]
Current price: $139.99 Original price: $199.99 Discount: 30% off
5 hours left at this price!
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
This course includes
  • 5.5 hours on-demand video
  • 10 articles
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
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What you'll learn
  • The 7 foundations of powerful storytelling.
  • A scientific insight into story drawing on psychology and neuroscience.
  • How to tell powerful stories as novels, screenplays and more.
  • The wisdom of storytellers dating back 5000 years.
  • Students will gain the most value if they have a love and passion for great stories.
  • This is an advanced course for writers to take their craft to the next level.


A Udemy "Top Course" in Writing.

Selected as "New & Noteworthy" in Creativity.

***College level instruction, based on 10 years of teaching and research, now available on Udemy.***

"Damien speaks with great clarity about a subject he really understands. His delivery is great. The ideas he delivers are fascinating." Rod Duncan, author of The Bullet Catcher's Daughter.

We live in a Golden Age of story. From blockbuster cinema and bestselling novels like Harry Potter & Hunger Games, to HBO television shows like Game of Thrones and American Gods, great storytelling is loved by billions of people worldwide. Writers who can tell great stories make huge fortunes.

Great storytelling can be learned.

The writers and creators of Star Wars, Breaking Bad or Mass Effect aren't just making things up. Today's most loved stories draw on thousands of years of storytelling techniques, from Aristotle's Catharsis, to the Monomyth of Joseph Campbell, and the Dramatica model used by many of today's highest paid screenwriters.

Based on over a decade of research, and bringing together ideas from today's most successful storytellers and story theorists, The Rhetoric of Story is an essential course for all creative writers, screenwriters and novelists.

The seven foundations of powerful storytelling.

Stories are powerful. Just a few words on a page, or some flickering images on a screen, and for a handful of moments, minutes, or hours we can believe we are another person, living another life, in another world. How do stories have such a powerful, immersive effect?

Just seven core techniques provide the foundation for every great story every told. Together these seven foundations form a "rhetoric of story", that can be used to tell a powerful, immersive story in any medium, from a 5 page short story, to a 10 hour television series.

A scientific insight into story.

Stories are more than just entertainment. As psychology and neuroscience reveal the inner workings of the mind, we're learning how great stories appeal to the deepest drives of the human psyche. The Rhetoric of Story draws on the psychological insights of Freud and Jung, and leading scientific research, to reveal the 7 foundations of powerful storytelling. 

Unleashing the power of story for all.

The poet and novelist Maya Angelou said, "There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you." The Rhetoric of Story provides a simple, flexible toolkit to tell any story. Apply the seven foundations to your writing and produce powerful stories that audiences fall in love with.

College grade teaching at internet prices.

The Rhetoric of Story is based on courses taught at under-graduate and post-graduate college level, to students paying thousands of dollars in fees. it makes that knowledge accessible for all, at incredible value.

The 7 foundations of great storytelling, in one easy to follow course.

Ideas you will learn in The Rhetoric of Story:

  • Why no story can be great without a profound INTERNAL change.

  • A psychological insight into self, the engine of story.

  • The key to creating truly human characters: the web of relationship.

  • Conflict, why it must be present, and the 3 levels it must cross.

  • The "fractal" pattern of events; stories within stories.

  • Why it's OK to steal story structure...in fact it should be compulsory.

  • How to harness the secret super power of story: Emotion.

Who is this course for?

Anyone who wants to write a book, short story or screenplay and wants to learn the 7 foundations of telling a compelling story.

Writers who have many stories under their belt, but struggle to find an audience for their work.

Creative professionals - journalists, copywriters, bloggers, marketers and more who want to utilise powerful storytelling.

Experts, influencers and business executives who want to harness the power of story in their careers.

Who this course is for:
  • Writers with ambition who want to work professionally in the writing industries.
  • Novelists, screenwriters, playwrights, game designers seeking bigger audiences.
  • Marketers and executives who want to harness powerful stories in their work.
Course content
Expand all 37 lectures 05:33:03
+ Change - Where all story begins.
4 lectures 41:04
Story is how we understand change.
Archetypal change is the core of story.
Lecture notes.
+ Self - The engine of story.
4 lectures 34:46
Know Thyself
The formation of desire
What is the self becoming?
Lecture Notes
+ Other - The web of relationship.
4 lectures 36:33
Demeter and Persephone
The web of relationships
The sundered self
Lecture Notes
+ Conflict - Why can't we all just get along?
4 lectures 43:04
Achilles and Hector
The levels of conflict
Antagonism and fear
Lecture Notes
+ Events - Stories within stories.
4 lectures 44:03
What are stories made of?
What is an event?
Stories within stories.
Lecture Notes
+ Structure - The key to complex storytelling.
5 lectures 53:47
Three Act structure.
Acts, Sequences, Scenes and Beats.
Alternate structures.
Lecture Notes
+ BONUS MATERIAL: Short videos and blog essays.
2 lectures 15:25
Why is writing hard?
Writing as practice.