Truby 22 Steps Template

Because I use Truby’s software a fair bit as well as Scrivener I thought I might offer the Truby template for Scrivener that I use a lot. What I like about Truby is that it asks very relevant questions to give your story engine some real juice. Not sure if the template works on Windows but I created it on Mac. I’m using it at the moment to write across three seasons of a TV series based on three novels so tracking is fairly important to me so I might transfer this over to Aeon as well to see how well it works. Aeon puzzles me a bit as my timelines are not linear. I know it has flash back and flash forward but I think I’d rather use Aeon to see the reality of the story in linear space. My time shifting I’d rather do on Scrivener’s corkboard which I found really useful when structuring.

Truby 22 Steps with notes.scrivtemplate (550.8 KB)


Did you check out Narrative view? It can represent your (manually arranged) events in the order your viewers are meant watch them.

Care to comment a bit more about this? Truby’s 22 steps are usually used for features. How are you applying this to three seasons of a TV series?

Sure. The steps are not, as I see them anyway, only for structure although ultimately they affect structure. What they do is create motivations, fears and desires, that lock into the plot. From the questions that Truby outlines we have to face as writers what the central character has to look at in terms of moral and psychological contradictions. The arcs that answering these questions create can track over a longer period than just a screenplay. I used to work in feature film script development but not TV so much but it seems the basic 7 steps as well as the 22 puts enough meat on the bones, and bones in the meat to take it to any distance you want. I do find my criticisms of TV series that fail to pick up following seasons are in the main motivational for central characters not following through or locking in enough to plot and other characters. 1899 a perfect example of this. You can see from the viewing figures that it was rated fairly well but audience completion was low. It didn’t hold its audience.

There is a point however where once that is done I abandon all the software and write instinctively following the structure I created. Sometimes that will change some of these question/answers but I feel they are inculcated into my brain when I write anyway. Where I am somewhat doubtful is where I am operating in three different timelines a good few years apart, that meshing those together isn’t easy. Part of me wants to stick to linear and another to non-linear. But I’ll have each timeline complete before I look at the possibility of meshing them together to see what the rhythm and pacing will look like and whether I feel it will be enough to hold the reader/audience over into the next book/series.

I did look at it but my brain just seems to enjoy seeing the corkboard being rearranged. I have a huge metal whiteboard at home and putting it all up there with magnets is a lot of fun and just so nice to see it all. I can jump all over the place.

Very interesting. Thanks for explaining, and for the template. Cheers.

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Just opened it. It works perfectly in Windows.

Thanks for sharing.


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