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SHOW ME THE LOVE: Love of Adventure

Pamela Jaye Smith and Monty Hayes McMillan take us on a journey through many different kinds of love that can enrich your characters, compel your plots, and move your audience.

From the book SHOW ME THE LOVE! All Kinds of Love for All Kinds of Stories by Pamela Jaye Smith & Monty Hayes McMillan.

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Got Love? Got enough Love? Got the right kind of Love?

No matter your genre or style, a good story needs some kind of Love to engage us emotionally.

Too often people think Love is just the romantic or sexual kind. But wait – there’s more.

Love of adventure, land, community, family, friends, warrior bonding, love of pets, love of learning, love of death and destruction, interspecies love, transformative chivalric love….

These articles explore the mythical and psychological aspects of different types of love, plus suggestions for the Shining Moment, Cinematic Techniques, and Symbols.

Join us for a journey through many different kinds of love that can enrich your characters, compel your plots, and move your audience.


“Space...the Final Frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise.
Her ongoing mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life forms
and new civilizations, to boldly go where no one has gone before.”

Star Trek

There's a kind of love that scales mountains, moves rivers, and changes worlds. This sort of love often also breaks up families, ruins careers, and ends in destitution and death.

star trek love 2

Yet it keeps luring people into its web, offering the chance of rewards beyond compare in emotional satisfaction, lifelong relationships, and worldly riches. This love is the Love of Adventure.

Since the first hominids dropped down from the trees to explore the savannahs, we have distinguished ourselves by a desire to know what's around the corner, over the hills, and even beyond the stars.


Science has identified the biochemistry for risk tolerance. An understanding of the addictive power of adrenalin will help you write these characters with more insight.

In Star Trek James Tiberius Kirk is born in a bath of adrenalin. His mom is in labor as his dad sacrifices his life to save the crew of the embattled starship. What a compelling chemical beginning to a life of adventure.

There can also be a sense of aloneness and sometimes alienation in the soul of an adventurer because others cannot truly understand them if they are not adventurers themselves.


Greek warrior Odysseus’ ten year journey back home from the fall of Troy finds him and his men tossed hither and yon onto foreign shores where they faced all sorts of challenges, loss and rewards.

The Mesopotamian saga of Gilgamesh and Enkidu is full of adventure as they search for the secret to immortality, battle scorpion men, and free-dive to the bottom of the sea.

The legendary King Solomon’s Mines lost somewhere in Africa have drawn adventurers for centuries.

A sense of adventure carried the Maori thousands of miles across the Pacific to Aotearoa, the Land of the Long White Cloud [New Zealand].

Greco-Roman adventuress Atalanta went on the great Calydonian boar hunt with the guys, was the swiftest runner in the land, and some stories say she accompanied Jason and the Argonauts on the quest for the Golden Fleece.


Chinese Admiral Zheng explored Malaya, Java, Indonesia, India, Madagascar and the Horn of Africa in the 1400s.

British explorer Captain James Cook, sailing the South Pacific on his ship Endeavor, said he wanted to "Go farther than any man has been before far as I think it is possible for a man to go.”

Alexandra David Neel - the first white woman into Lhasa, Tibet. Gertrude Bell – writer, traveler, archaeologist, and spy in the Middle East. Grace O’Malley - 16th century Irish pirate.

12th century Muslim explorer and popular travel writer Ibn Jubayr trekked around the Mediterranean and the Middle East, a precursor to Rick Steves and Anthony Bourdain.


Adventure stories have been popular since the first tales around the campfire recounted the great mammoth hunt, the journey of exploration, and fighting other tribes or the gods.

Vergil’s Aeneid, The Three Musketeers, Don Quixote, Lord of the Rings, 7 Years in Tibet, Around the World in 80 Days, Doctor Who, Journey to the Center of the Earth, The Lost World, Mountains of the Moon, The Right Stuff, Star Wars, Stargate, Swiss Family Robinson, Treasure Island, Young Indiana Jones.

Petra Volare is an 11-year old inventor and adventuress in ancient Crete, Icarus’s unknown younger sister.

In Up, a widower and a young Scout head to Paradise Falls in South America, hoping to fulfill the old man’s late wife’s dream. As she always believed, “Adventure is out there!”

Interstellar adventures into space, into the spaces between things, into the twists of time, and into the human heart.

As Buzz Lightyear of the Toy Story series always urges, “To infinity and beyond!”


The Gear - pickax and pitons, the pith helmet, the wetsuit, the parachute, the space ship, etc.

A Map, a Globe, a Star Chart.


Your adventurous character acquires the right gear, signaling his own change of heart and direction. In Avatar, Jake Sully mounts the dragon and begins his adventure to help the Na’vi turn back the humans.

Going through gateways into a new world – leaping off a cliff, walking through a doorway, jumping out of an airplane, crossing a border.


Wide environmental shot: airplane in the sky, boy riding dragon, ship tossed on the vast sea. Show the human in the midst of that which embodies their adventure.

Close shot of putting on the uniform, picking up the tools -- taking on the mission.

Explore the environment, as in Lawrence of Arabia where Lawrence rides through the desert, dismounts at the oasis, and watches Sherif Ali ride in from the distance.

Start close on the heroine, zoom out to the whole area affected by her actions. Reverse that.

Sustained coverage of the huge monstrous processes of nature unfolding before our eyes sucks us into the experience much more effectively than jerky cuts can ever do. The rising tsunami, the encroaching forest fire, the erupting volcano – all deserve long holding shots that make you want to break away and run.


A story about the Love of Adventure should inspire us to dust off our passports, pack up our pith helmets, and set out for the vast unknown.

As most of the surface of the earth becomes accessible via personal travel or Google Earth, the sense of adventure that started humans out on our great migrations tens of thousands of years ago will still draw us to the extremes, the new ones being off-planet, underground, and beneath the surface of the seas.



What is the most adventurous thing you have heard of…or done?



Write a scene where your protagonist is trying to talk a non-adventurer into action but they refuse the challenge.

© 2015 Pamela Jaye Smith & Monty Hayes McMillan

Pamela Jaye’s BOOKS & SEMINARS can be found at the Writers Store and on MYTHWORKS, where you can also learn more about her consulting, writing, and pitching services. Mythic ChallengesAlpha Babe Academy

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