Into the Woods

Into the Woods : A Five-ACT Journey Into Story

4.23 (1,198 ratings by Goodreads)
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The idea of Into the Woods is not to supplant works by Aristotle, Lajos Egri, Robert McKee, David Mamet, or any other writers of guides for screenwriters and playwrights, but to pick up on their cues and take the reader on a historical, philosophical, scientific, and psychological journey to the heart of all storytelling. In this exciting and wholly original book, John Yorke not only shows that there is truly a unifying shape to narrative--one that echoes the great fairytale journey into the woods, and one, like any great art, that comes from deep within--he explains why, too. With examples ranging from The Godfather to True Detective, Mad Men to Macbeth, and fairy tales to Forbrydelsen (The Killing), Yorke utilizes Shakespearean five-act structure as a key to analyzing all storytelling in all narrative forms, from film and television to theatre and novel-writing--a big step from the usual three-act approach. Into the Woods: A Five-Act Journey Into Story is destined to sit alongside David Mamet's Three Uses of the Knife, Robert McKee's Story, Syd Field's Screenplay, and Lajos Egri's The Art of Dramatic Writing as one of the most original, useful, and inspiring books ever on dramatic writing.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 336 pages
  • 150 x 226 x 23mm | 363g
  • United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 1468310941
  • 9781468310948
  • 160,107

Review Text

"This is a marvelous analysis of screenwriting and, with any luck, should help a great many people achieve their dreams."-Julian Fellowes, creator/writer, Downton Abbey§§"All script writers will want to read it." -Caitlin Moran, bestselling author of How to Be a Woman§§" Into the Woods by John Yorke is brilliant on story structure." -Ken Follett, bestselling author of Pillars of the Earth§§"There is no end of books that instruct us on how to write the perfect screenplay, but few that delve more deeply into the art of storytelling than this erudite volume." - Financial Times§§"Love storytelling? You need this inspiring book. John Yorke dissects the structure of stories with a joyous enthusiasm allied to precise, encyclopedic knowledge. Guaranteed to send you back to your writing desk with newfound excitement and drive." -Chris Chibnall, creator/writer, Broadchurch and Gracepoint§§"Outrageously good and by far and away the best book of its kind I've ever read. I recognized so much truth in it. But more than that, I learned a great deal. Time and again, Yorke articulates things I've always felt but have never been able to describe . . . This is a love story to story-erudite, witty and full of practical magic. I struggle to think of the writer who wouldn't benefit from reading it-even if they don't notice because they're too busy enjoying every page."- Neil Cross, creator/writer, Luther and Crossbones§§"Part 'how-to' manual, part 'why-to' celebration, Into the Woods is a wide-reaching and infectiously passionate exploration of storytelling in all its guises . . . exciting and thought-provoking." -Emma Frost, screenwriter, The White Queen and Shameless§§"John Yorke's Into the Woods is brilliant. It illuminates and explains." -Susan Hill, author of The Woman In Black and the Simon Serrailler crime novels§§"Even for a convinced sceptic, John Yorke's book, with its massive field of reference from Aristotle to Glee , and from Shakespeare to Spooks , is a highly persuasive and highly energetic read."-Dominic Dromgoole, Artistic Director, the Globe Theatre§
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Review quote

Into The Woods is an amazing achievement. It has a real depth and understanding about story, a fantastically broad frame of reference and it's interesting and absorbing throughout. Full of incredibly useful insights, every TV writer should read the first chapter alone --Simon Ashdown, former Lead writer and series consultant of Eastenders
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About John Yorke

John Yorke is Managing Director of Company Pictures, the UK drama independent behind "Shameless," "The White Queen," and "Wolf Hall." A former Head of BBC Drama Production, he championed some of the defining works of British television including "Life On Mars," "The Street," "Shameless," and "Waterloo Road." In 2005 he created the BBC Writers Academy. John Yorke is Visiting Professor of English Language and Literature at the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and lives and works in London.
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Rating details

1,198 ratings
4.23 out of 5 stars
5 43% (519)
4 40% (484)
3 13% (160)
2 2% (28)
1 1% (7)
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