The Story Grid

What Good Editors Know

By: Shawn Coyne
Introduction By: Steven Pressfield

The Story Grid is a tool developed by editor Shawn Coyne to analyze stories and provide helpful editorial comments. It's like a CT Scan that takes a photo of the global story and tells the editor or writer what is working, what is not, and what must be done to make what works better and fix what's not.

The Story Grid is a tool with many applications:

  1. It will tell a writer if a Story "works" or "doesn't work."
  2. It pinpoints story problems but does not emotionally abuse the writer, revealing exactly where a Story (not the person creating the Story...the Story) has failed.
  3. It will tell the writer the specific work necessary to fix that Story's problems.
  4. It is a tool to re-envision and resuscitate a seemingly irredeemable pile of paper stuck in an attic drawer.
  5. It is a tool that can inspire an original creation.