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  • Writer's pictureKevin Cordi

How do Storytellers Help Novice Storytellers Learn the Craft? Part 1

Kevin Cordi Create a legacy for tomorrow. This workshop will focus on how storytellers can help new and novice storytellers. We will also focus on passing on the old stories and the old traditions.

People are hungry for stories. It is part of our very being. Storytelling is a form of history, of immortality too. It goes from one generation to another.

­­­­­­Studs Terkel

How Do Storytellers Help Novice Storytellers Learn the Craft?

  1. Recognize there is a storyteller in all of us. Robin Moore in his book Creating A Family Storytelling Tradition said, “Inside each of us is a natural­born storyteller, waiting to be released.” However, unless we truly listen to the stories, regardless of how they are told, we will never hear that hidden storyteller. We need to first listen to whatever story is being told and appreciate the value that it is told and only when the storyteller says they are ready, offer what we view as more to the story.

  2. Arrange Quality Time to Listen. Storytelling and listening to stories has to be part of your schedule. Arrange a time to listen and tell stories on a consistent basis. Arrange quality time, a time when listening and telling can be given priority, and stick to that schedule. People need to depend on a frequent time to tell and listen to stories. It must be a part of their lives. It can not be ignored, everyone has stories that are waiting to be told.

  3. Check Your Critic Hat At the Door Unless Someone Asks You To Wear It. After you establish a place for story, make sure it is a comfortable place. Listen to stories and after you listen for awhile the teller will share when he or she wants ideas to help them with their stories. At all times the teller should be in charge of how a story is developed. Your job is to listen and offer to share ideas, but if a teller does not feel they are ready to hear these ideas, respect that the story is told. In a community of storytelling, where a place is provided on a consistent basis, improvement will show.

  4. Keep Praise in the Program However, very few, if any at all, tellers mind Hearing praise for their work. Don’t be bashful about saying something you Specifically liked or enjoyed in a story. If someone can see that you honor the Story by your words of praise, the teller is more apt to listen to your suggestions

As well.

  1. Challenge The Group as Tellers. Once you are comfortable being in an environment of praise and acceptable for suggestions, experiment with stories. Have workshops on voice; arrange separate meetings to discuss topics like tandem telling, personal tales, fractured fairy tales, and folk tale recovery.

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