The idea that stories slavishly obey deep structural patterns seems at first vaguely depressing. But it shouldn't be. Think of the human face. The fact that all faces are very much alike doesn't make the face boring or mean that particular faces can't startle us with their beauty or distinctiveness. As William James once wrote, "There is very little difference between one man and another; but what little there is, is very important." The same is true of stories.I never thought of it that way, of course, so this comparison was eye opening.
Jonathan Gottschall, The Storytelling Animal