Becoming a better Storyteller

Image by Olaojo Aiyegbayo
Image by Olaojo Aiyegbayo

I attended a storytelling conference at Brighton last week. I was there to present a paper as well as to learn more about storytelling. I believe we are all in the storytelling business irrespective of what we do for a living. We learn best via stories. We organise our sense of the world through stories. They help us process complicated facts. Stories also help us empathise with other human beings and this is what separates us from animals. I used my iPhone 4S at Brighton to capture all the images in the picture frame above. I would like to share with you some of the things I plan to develop over the next few months.

One of my 2013 goals is to be a better storyteller and the Brighton conference has spurred me to stretch myself. Good storytelling requires two things to effective – good design and excellent delivery. This means that a good story has to be well-structured (designed) and it also has to be well-told (delivered). Storytelling is a skill. You only get better at it by practising and learning from other skilled storytellers. I am studying three storytellers at the moment: Malcolm Gladwell, Ira Glass and Clay Shirky. I would encourage you to check out their video presentations on Vimeo and Youtube to see them in action.  These three men come from different backgrounds. Gladwell is a New Yorker writer, Glass is a radio personality and Shirky is an academic.

My blog/website is my text based storytelling platform and there are some images included with every blog post. I want to experiment with the tools that I currently own (e.g. the iPhone, digital voice recorder and iPad) to produce digital stories on the web using mainly audio, images and video. I have already published two experimental digital stories on Cowbird. Check them out and let me know what you think of them. I plan to publish more digital stories on different web platforms over the next few months and will keep you posted via this blog.

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