A story that goes nowhere is pretty dull. Even simple fairy tales like The Three Little Pigs or Little Red Ridinghood move forward in a predictable, understandable way. Complex stories follow this same progression, with Shakespearean plays serving as a good example. This narrative structure is critical to understanding how and why stories work, and how to improve your own storytelling skills. This post goes into detail about narrative structure and conflict, and how the two work together to keep a reader’s attention.