Story Framework Introspectives #1 - Overcoming the Monster

Oli Gardner
Founder of Outline
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Story Framework Introspectives #1 - Overcoming the Monster

Outline Introspectives Series

The Introspectives series adapts classic story frameworks into presentation outlines, and showcases their unique introduction structures.

Complete with actionable examples, and explanations, Introspectives are designed to explain the structure and flow of what makes an introduction great, and help you deliver more meaningful and impactful presentations.

Download the full 30-page PDF of episode #1

Episode #1 - Overcoming the Monster

Adapted from the work of Christopher Booker, 'Overcoming the Monster' is a story framework that outlines a narrative where the story's hero confronts and triumphs over a significant external challenge or adversary.

The Overcoming the Monster story arc
This is the original breakdown of the story arc

Adapting the story arc for presentations

We adapted the framework to give it a structure suitable for use as a presentation outline.

After being adapted as a presentation outline, the framework has 9 sections
After being adapted as a presentation outline, the framework has 9 sections

Type of presentation this framework is good for

The "Overcoming the Monster" framework resonates deeply with audiences because it taps into the universal themes of conflict and triumph.

It is particularly well-suited for:

  1. Entrepreneurial Journeys: Entrepreneurs can use this framework to describe the challenges they faced when starting their businesses, the 'monsters' of uncertainty, market competition, or financial hurdles they overcame, and how they achieved success.
  2. Case Studies in Innovation: When a company innovates to solve a significant problem or 'monster' such as a technological barrier, environmental issue, or a health epidemic, this narrative structure can effectively communicate the journey and breakthrough.
  3. Motivational and Inspirational Talks: Personal stories of overcoming adversity, such as defeating an illness, surpassing a personal limitation, or achieving a significant life goal, fit this mold and inspire audiences.
  4. Marketing Campaigns for Problem-Solving Products: Products designed to solve significant problems or 'monsters' (like security software that protects against cyber threats) can be marketed using this narrative to highlight the stakes and the victory provided by the product.
  5. Political or Advocacy Speeches: Politicians or activists often use this framework to frame a societal issue as a 'monster' and then rally support by showcasing how they plan to or have overcome these issues.
  6. Sports and Athletic Stories: Athletic narratives often involve an athlete or team facing and overcoming the 'monster' of a formidable opponent, a losing streak, or internal conflicts to win a championship or achieve greatness.
  7. Historical Narratives: Stories of historical battles, conflicts, or movements that feature a clear adversary or obstacle can be structured around the 'Overcoming the Monster' theme to captivate and educate audiences.

Using this framework as a presentation outline

The framework is available as a template inside the Outline product. The screenshot below shows all 41 slides.

A screenshot of the "Overcoming a monster" framework template inside the Outline app
Each slide has expandable details that provide a description and example use case