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  • Writer's pictureKevin Cordi

Playing with Story-Continue the Exercises

It is great to hear from others who are engaging in Word Dancing exercises. I want you to know that when I was writing the book Playing with Stories (Parkhurst Brothers, 2014),

I played out loud using these exercises to serve as examples in the book.  I made sure I too played before writing.   It helped lift the book in a new way, I was able to Word Dance the making of the book.


As I mentioned, instead of advancing straight to plot, let us look at what is around the story, in particular the voices that are heard and perhaps silent and waiting to be heard.

You have an idea, mine is working with Little Red Riding Hood, but this exercise examines the question, "Who are the voices behind the story?"

I hope this encourages you to play with finding and discovering the voices from your story idea. Don't predict them, let play be your guide as you discover your story.

Voice and voices are important to the story making process. I am not simply saying the voice that you use in telling, but instead the internal and external voices that are in or around your story.

In creating a story, I think about what Carl Sagan says about writing a book. The same principle applies to the voices that you hear and don't hear as you use play in shaping the story. Look for the other voices to guide you. As you seek out these voices, your story voice will be stronger.

A book is made from a tree. It is an assemblage of flat, flexible parts (still called "leaves") imprinted with dark pigmented squiggles. One glance at it and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for thousands of years. Across the millennia, the author is speaking, clearly and silently, inside your head, directly to you. Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people, citizens of distant epochs, who never knew one another. Books break the shackles of time--proof that humans can work magic."

Carl Sagan

Watch the video and consider your own story as you watch it. See how play helps me think of the voices that are within and around the story. I would love to hear how you play with your story as you make it using these exercises. If you have an exercise to share, please do. We invite your comments.

If you are interested in story and play, contact me at .

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