Freytag’s Pyramid

This is how I write. It’s called Freytag’s pyramid and it’s a diagram of dramatic structure. I was creating stories this way long before I realized it was a real thing, but I figured it’d be a good idea to share since I often outline the progress of my novel using these terms.

1) Exposition/Introduction = Present setting, time and place, characters (protagonist-hero/heroine, antagonist-villian) and basic conflict.

2) Rising Action = Basic conflict becomes more complicated by obstacles.

3) Climax = Turning point , pr change, that has an effect , either for the better or worse, on the protagonist’s situations.

4) Falling Action = Conflict begins to resolve.

5) Conclusion (Also known as Denouement)  = Protagonist achieves goal. Conflict resolves.

Happy Writing!


4 comments on “Freytag’s Pyramid

  1. Found your blog, Jen! This is such a memory-lane moment reading your blog. I taught hs english in another lifetime and creative writing was one of my classes – the only class the kids genuinely enjoyed. The private school I worked for let me offer in the summer as part of the extension program it was always full.

  2. This diagram dates all the way back to the ancient Greeks although, it started with only three parts rather than five then. Back then, Greek plays only had three acts and they corresponded to the exposition, climax, and denouement. Then Gustav Freytag made slight alternations abased on his analysis and added the rising action and the falling action.
    Even Shakespeare even used that same breakdown when composing his plays. He had 5 acts and each act corresponding to one of the five parts of the dramatic structured, act one being the introduction or exposition and five the denouement or conclusions with the others following in order in between.
    Sorry… I got a little too excited when I saw this.

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