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Mastering the art of story-telling

Storytelling can be traced back to the age of cavemen who recorded the details of their hunting expeditions on the wall by drawing stick figures. Telling tales is an integrate part of every human being, not only those who write novels or produce movies but it applies to all of us. We do it all the time even without realizing it as for example, narrating to a friend what occurred last Friday night or how was your vacation trip to Thailand. However, whilst some of us have the talent to transform any trivial event into a bewitching tale, others have to work on their storytelling skills. Here are 3 crucial lessons on how to fully master the art of storytelling

  • Don’t beat around the bush – When communicating with an audience, be it close friends, family or complete strangers, always keep in mind that they are not necessarily interested in what you have to narrate. Therefore, first and foremost, be concise by carefully selecting the details you want to include and what can be left out.
  • The conflict – It’s a must for all captivating stories to have a conflict. Controversy can be seen at the heart of every famed tale in literature since solutions to any problem are only meaningful whenever the stakes are raised.
  • Turning point – In order for a tale to strike us, the audience has to see the character exposed to pressure and how the latter dealt with the situation.

Now, keeping the 3 above-mentioned tips in mind, here is how to formulate a story:

  • Setting up the scene – Where is your story taking place? For example, a tale of an unfortunate accident gives place to different outlooks as compared to recounting a wedding. Without giving out too much information, you should be able to project a mental image for your audience so that they more easily visualize your story’s setting.
  • Characters – Your characters are what make the story alive. So who is your tale about? If your story is about a dull character, your audience will bore easily. Therefore, your main character should be able to intrigue your audience so as to keep them captivated.
  • Plot – Even though the set and the characters are essential for storytelling, without a proper plot, your story is irrelevant. There are three vital steps to follow when creating a plot:
  1. The set-up – Overview of the setting and the characters while introducing the problem or tension which arises later in your story
  2. Build-up – Enhance and develop that tension perhaps by narrating some incidents that might challenge your character in unforeseen ways.
  3. Pay-off – Lastly, once you have reached the climax and have captured your audience attention, you need to give them some sort of release. This is where, in fairy tales, the prince finally rescues the damsel and make her his princess living happily ever after.

A note to remember: always have a consistent flow in your storytelling. The story you are delivering to your audience should be coherent and always in motion.

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