I'm going to pause for a moment in order to speak to the people who may think that I cheated when I wrote my book. There are going to be critical people who will say that instead of dreaming up something wonderful and putting it to paper, I went out and found a story structure and substituted my characters. I retold a story that has been told thousands of times over.
To those people, I would say that's exactly what I did. And I would advise anyone who is struggling to get something done to look over the Hero's Journey for themselves. In fact, if you don't feeling like reading Joseph Campbell's book, this is the website where I found the above information. I had an idea for a new story, but I wasn't entirely sure how it all came together. That was the same virus that killed off my previous attempt at a book. I might not be the brightest person, but I know that I wasn't going to get better by bashing my head against a wall and doing the same thing.
Before I wrote my first word of my new book, I downloaded the document, read it, and wrote my story notes as I went. If you decide to do this for yourself, just remember one thing. There are no handcuffs. You can include what you like and leave out what you don't.
If you want to try and keep your ideas pure, by all means go write the story that you want. You're probably a better storyteller than me and won't fall into the same traps that I had a problem with. However, if you've already skinned your knees along the way, I would recommend taking a look at the structure.
Now, while we're on the topic, my initial goal was to get a story done. I don't want to get to my twelfth book and still use the same structure. As an artist, I would like to grow and improve.