Selling Your Story: The Intro

Today, we talked about storytelling.  We talked about how to use the plot line format to craft our stories so that our audience will be able to follow our thoughts.

It was a fun day today to tell each other stories (and to ring the bells, right, guys?) and talk about how we can strengthen our storytelling skills.

I think I should put this down in writing, just so your parents and others will understand:

In storytelling speeches, it’s okay to exaggerate or enhance a story.  It’s even okay to lie.  We’re telling a story – which is, by definition, fiction.  So you’re not really lying.  You’re just telling a story.

Mrs. Krajci’s disclaimer:

If you ever go to court and have to swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, the rules about storytelling do not apply.

If your parents ask you a question, the rules about storytelling do not apply (but you could use what you’ve learned to make it a good answer!)

Now that we’ve got that taken care of, let’s talk about how you start your stories.

Little kids will start out with

“Mom, do you know what happened?”

See?  Even little kids know to start a speech with some suspense helps the story work better for the audience.

It’s a little more complex with a storytelling speech.  When you build suspense in your audience, they will want to listen all the way to the end.  In the middle school class, we talked a lot about endings.  It’s your job to make sure all the loose ends are tied up.

You have to lay your groundwork from the very beginning for a good payoff at the end.  Your introduction has to be directly tied to the end of the story.  That’s why however crazy your story might be, you have to be in control of the story.

Your job as a storyteller is to create an emotion in your listeners.  A speech is used to persuade your audience to do something.  A story is emotional.  We need to find ways to build emotion into a storytelling speech.

Mike Rowe Mike Rowe and The Way I Heard It

Your homework assignment is to listen to a podcast by Mike Rowe called The Way I Heard It.  You can choose any three episodes to listen to.  Mike has a unique way of telling a story – you don’t know who Mike is talking about until the end, but you will find that he’s laid out the story with little hints even in the beginning to make the story work.

Extra Credit

Your extra credit assignment is to listen to five different episodes of Mike’s podcasts in a row.  Tell me what he does in stories that make you want to listen to his story.  Or, if you don’t like Mike, tell me why you don’t like his format.  (75 words)

One Comment:

  1. After listening to all five podcasts , I found a pattern. He would start out vague as to who the characters were, continuing vaguely throughout the podcast, but when he got to the end of the podcast, Mike revealed the name/names of the main character/characters. I would often be able to identify them by their full names because they are/were widely known. I found myself looking forward to the big reveal during each podcast, keeping me guessing and waiting until the end. I was most excited with the podcast titled “John’s Portuguese Cousin” ( episode 19 ) because the major characters what is revealed as Steve Perry of the band Journey. One of my favorite songs happens to be “Seperate Ways” by Journey, and “Don’t Stop Believing” is an undeniable classic. mike’s podcasts wear short, action-packed, and informative. I liked this assignment very much! Thank you for a pleasant break from stress, Mrs. Krajci and Mike Rowe. (Another reason I liked the assignment was because Mike was on a show I used to love called Dirty Jobs. 🤗)

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