Introduction to Storytelling


You've just attended a storytelling festival with a song in your heart and a story on your lips ready to tell, but how?
It's easy as 1-2-3 with a few simple steps, then you will be telling entertaining stories too.
Most storytellers do not memorize a story, unless they have something akin to a photographic memory and rarely does t storyteller tell the same way twice.
With a few easy lessons, you can learn the fundamentals of storytelling, what techniques are used and in what order to use them to recall story elements.
My introduction to storytelling came from a friend who just returned from a storytelling festival in Jonesborough, TN.  Her excitement was contagious as she spoke of plans to begin a storytellers group in our area.  When I left that first meeting, I knew my life would never be the same. What joy the art of storytelling has brought to my life and the lives of children and adults.
I've been a storyteller to children of all ages and no matter the age, children become engrossed in the
story as it unfolds. Plain and simple, children and adults love to hear a good storyteller.

Forming a storyteller group
The size of your town isn't important when making a decision to start your own storytelling group, I live in a small town with a population less than 50,000. A group is two or more people, and keep in mind as people begin to hear of your group, it will grow in membership.
If you do not have a mentor to teach you the art of storytelling, check back later for a tutorial posted on this site. Practice the elements of storytelling in the tutorial and when you've become comfortable, it's time to pick up the phone and call a few friends.

Where do I find stories to tell?
Stories for telling are everywhere. Internet sites list many stories to tell for free and your local library are both great places to start.  Choose from Brer Rabbit tales or children books to find your favorite tales. One award winning story  by Tim Tingle touched my heart, and I tell it to children over the ages of eight. You too, can find touching stories of your own with a little dedication and research.

Where do I tell stories?
You will be welcomed with opened arms if you volunteer your time and talent as a storyteller.  Begin by contacting schools, local festivals, underprivileged children organizations and after school care. We tend to forget those tucked away out of sight in assisted living and nursing homes and we, as storytellers can bring a little pleasure into their lives, and who knows . . . They may tell you a story or two!

Bring history to life with storytelling
If you're a history lover, storytelling can be a useful teaching tool.  As your words and gestures paint a vivid picture, your audience-just like the camera, captures and records each scene.
For example, my home town is often referred to as the queen city, although not the official name.  I did my research and wrote my own story about why it was called the queen city. A chilling story about the death of a gypsy queen and why she was brought here for burial in nineteen-sixteen. This is part of our local history.
If ghost tales are for you, seek out local ghost stories in your area. Most towns and communities have claims of ghostly places,  find different versions of a story and choose your favorite or combine the most interesting details to create your own ghostly tale.

What type of Storyteller are you?
Storytelling is like trying on a new pair of shoes, you know when they fit. Does the story you've selected fit your style of telling? Some people like to tell fables or ghostly stories, others like to tell short stories or tales from favorite children books. They're many types of stories to tell, so try them on; one is sure to fit like a pair of comfortable shoes.

Remember when?
As a child, my sister and I listened to episodes of  The Green Hornet and The Screeching Door on the radio.  Our visuals came in the form of imagination as actors verbally portrayed thier roles.                                                  

Waving goodbye until my next storytelling visit!