Story map template - Mind Map

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A story map is a strategy that uses a graphic organizer to help you learn the elements of a book or story. By identifying story characters, plot, setting, problem, and the solution you will learn the details.

Keywords: literature, writing

Story map template

Story map template

Use this story map template to learn the elements of a book or story. It is a graphic organizer, where you can identify story characters, plot, setting, challenges, and motivation of the main character, obstacles he/she encounters, and how he surpasses them.

Title of your story

To name your story, you have to think about the overall message and what you want your audience to understand from the story. Also, make it relevant and easy to remember.


The ending of a story is essential. We all know that if the ending is weak, what happened before loses its importance. So make it unpredictable, but fair. A resolved ending answers all the questions and ties up any loose threads from the plot.


This is the closure section of the story.
See examples of possible outcomes below:


Try answering these questions to come up with a closure:
- Have all the problems been solved?
- Is there a clear picture of what happens with each character in the story?
- Has the challenge transformed your main character?
- How do the characters feel in the end?


This is the moment when the main character surpasses the last obstacle and finally faces their greatest challenge.
The climax usually follows one of these patterns:

Type in your answer.

How does your main character finally solve the problem?


The middle of the story is where you add layers of complications that will lead to the end. Reveal more about the character's journey. Did their personality go through changes? How did they overcome the challenges? And as you build up the story’s central conflict, make it more personal to that character. Also, from the middle act, you have to lead into the final act.


There wouldn't be any tension and excitement in your story if there weren't any obstacles in your character's way.

What prevents your character from accomplishing their goal?

A story is nothing more than a character overcoming a series of difficulties to reach the desired goal. Obstacles usually create suspense and conflict. In overcoming obstacles, there is growth: weak becomes strong; hatred turns into love; sadness into happiness; wrong into right; lies into truth; or evil becomes good.

See a few examples below:



Your character(s) need(s) motivation in order to solve the challenge(s).

Other character

Secondary characters might also have motives that lead them to cross paths with the main character or which might trigger them to help the main character.

Main character

Why does your character need to confront this challenge? What does he/she expect to accomplish by solving it?
See a few examples:



Each story has a main character and that character usually needs to solve a problem or challenge. The character's challenge is the one that creates tension throughout the story.

Other Challenges

Type in any other challenges which other characters in the story need to face.

Other challenges

What are the main challenges in your story?

In most stories, there are 3 challenges. The number 3 is a mystical number symbolizing completeness. Try to come up with interesting challenges with which your character needs to struggle.
See a few examples below:



In the beginning of the story (or the exposition), you will need to introduce the setting and characters. You might also want to introduce the main conflict. This part of the story is important because it gives the reader necessary background information and maybe even a first insight into a character’s personality.


The setting (time & place) of a story can change throughout the plot.

Sensory detail

Sensory details include sight, sound, touch, smell, and taste. These details are important because they create depth in your setting.
See a few examples below:

Sensory details


The weather is an important element in your story because it can highly influence the ambiance and the mood of the characters.

Catastrophic event

Does your story include catastrophic weather? See a few suggestions below or add your own:
- hurricane, earthquake, storm, etc


The time of the story can also change. It can describe the event of a single day or can include an entire year's plot. Anyway, don't forget to mention it.

Time of plot

Where does the story takes place?

Your story can take place wherever your imagination will take you to.
For example: in an elevator, in an enchanted forest, etc. Don't forget to give details of the environment each time the setting changes, otherwise, the story can be confusing. Also, mention the seasons as each of them has unique weather and events.



Characters are essential to a good story. Usually, the protagonist(s) is/are the most affected by the plot. Introduce a character by focusing on their actions, interests, and occupation, as the physical appearance doesn't make a difference in most cases.

Character's name

Type in the name of your character.


Add other qualities/attributes of the character.

Main Goal

What is your character's main goal?

fight Evilfind lovedefeat his/her enemyrule the worldmake friendstime travelmake an awesome discoveryOther

Character traits

Which traits best describe the character's personality? Choose more if necessary:


Type of character

Choose the type of your chacter:

Protagonist (main character)Antagonist (main character's opponent)Flat (stereotypical character)Round (his/ her personality develops throughout the story)Static (doesn't evolve as a person throughout the story)Dynamic (dramatical change in personality)Confidant (the main character trusts him/ her)Foil (contrasting character who enhances the personality of another character)Other

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