The Craft of Storytelling

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Below is a link which leads to a website filled with audio stories.

Salt Institute

The two stories I listened to were “Powered by Laughter” by Avery Moore and “Hide and Seek: An Adventure Maine Geocaching” by Amanda Thieroff. Both stories were able to provide audio which brought the audience into the scene which was taking place. We are able to place ourselves inside of their stories through their audio, which further allowed us to imagine the surroundings and actions taking place within the story.

In “Powered by Laughter”, Avery Moore followed Katie West through her day of being a life coach and business women who believes laughter is not only a way of life, but a tool for survival. A key scene is when we hear a mob of people inside Grand Central all laughing together at once. We are able to put ourselves inside of Grand Central and visualize a mob of people all around the center clock laughing simutaneously and if you can’t do this… probably have never been to New York City and that’s on you. However, just as any great story, we were given a twist by West. Although she harps on the importance on laughter and joy, she expresses how she had to work to find this equilibrium. She did not have a childhood full of laughter as we find out, being her mother was severely depressed for her entire childhoof and parents were divorce. Instead of living with a gloomy and dark outlook on life, West talks about how she used her past expereinces to find the light and joy which comes out of all life. We are able to capture her sense of emotion through her storytelling, which captivates us as an audience and allows us to feel her roller coaster ride of a life go up and down to her final destination.

In “Hide and Seek: An Adventure maine Geocaching”, Amanda Thieroff brings a new ‘sport’ to her audience through descriptive narrative and shadowing of veteran Mike Moreno. First off, when I say ‘sport’ I am severly stretching the definition to allow geocaching in this category. Geocaching is essentially a high-tech treasure hunt game, played across the world with the use of GPS devices. The idea of the game is to go online and find coordinates to a treasure hidden somewhere throughout the country. The treasure is hidden withing a film canaster and ranges from any type of possesion imaginable. We as an audience are taking along on this adventure to find the sought after treasure, with Mike and his companions. Thieroff flips her story back and forth between interview and real-life hunting, which helps the audience to place themselves in the surrounding and gage a sense of what is expected from this ‘sport’ such as: slang, nicknames, and the golden rule (you take something out, you put something back in). Mike describes himself as a pirate on the hunt for some buried treasure. Part of the thrill and excitement in the game is knowing thousands of people are posisbly walking by the treasure every single day without the faintest clue. Growing up almost every child plays pirates and listening to this audio allows me to feel this dream become a reality. While listeting I can feel my heart pouding as Mike reaches inside of the branches and bricks in hope of finding the treasure that was planted there by somebody before him. The audio allows us to feel these emotions of hope and puts us on the edge of our seat waiting to hear what he found.

The key to storytelling is finding your hook, the thing which grabs your audience’s attention and leaves them yearning for more.


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