Day 11 – Cinderella Story Structure

For the next three days we’ll be writing stories based on their strcuture. Today’s will be very familiar to anyone who’s heard the words ‘three act structure’ or ever heard of “Cinderella”.

The Prompt

Write a story in which your hero wants something, tries and fails to get it, and eventually has their life-changing moment at the end of the story.


  • Let you character want something. In Cinderella’s case she wants happiness. Your character might want anything from fulfillment to a piece of chocolate cake!
  • This story structure ends when the character realizes what needs to be done and makes the decision to pursue it or to walk away. In a short story you don’t have to show was the rest of the events. The arc, the journey, for the character is over at the moment when they see the path to pursuing their goal.

6 thoughts on “Day 11 – Cinderella Story Structure”

  1. For me, the repeated try / fail structure suggested comedy! I wrote a piece about a guy who accidentally puts a mean magical whammy on his boss and fails, repeatedly, to fix it.

  2. Got my story done finally. This one is the longest one I’ve written this month. I should be able to fit this right into the novel I’m currently plotting, though I may fill it in with more details.

    Jeff is struggling because of his own mistakes, but wants his family to see him as more than just a screw up. And when he keeps failing at that, his brother points out that maybe he’s sabotaging himself because he doesn’t think he deserves to be seen in a better light.


  3. I wrote a story about an alcoholic who wants sobriety. He tries to give up drinking a number of times… it got pretty dark pretty fast and he lost a lot. But the story ended on a high note, with him at a crossroad (literally) where he decides to go to rehab.

    More of a downer than I’d hoped for on a beautiful Friday afternoon! But I liked how it turned out. I began this prompt by coming up with a list of things people typically “want”. Freedom jumped out at me, and somehow that led to this story.

    Thank you for the prompt and for the related posts, which helped!

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