||July 4, 2011
How To Tell A Great Story will equip you with powerful storytelling techniques that master storytellers have used throughout time to amaze and engage their audiences.This simple, but powerful beginner's guidebook, makes learning storytelling techniques.
How To Tell A Great Story
How To Tell A Great Story
Here's a hint of the Storytelling Guidelines You'll get in How To Tell A Great Story
STEP 1 - Vital Preparation To Help You Tell Your Great Story
Imagine this: you are standing in an empty room. You are an artist and would like to paint a picture. But, there are no canvas, no paints, no brushes and not even an easel. How are you possibly going to get that masterpiece of yours on canvas without even these basic items in hand?
Likewise, in storytelling, if you do not have some of the most basic equipment in hand, then how are you possibly going to tell that great story of yours?
Once you master this step, you will be prepared to tell a story at any time, INSTANTLY.
STEP 2 - Themes Of Your Great Story
The following is a conversation between an Advertising Executive and his Boss. The Boss has just completed going over the Executive's masterpiece – a presentation for a client - from cover to cover.
Executive : So, what did you think of the story I told?
Boss: Well, it’s quite long. I can see you’ve got an exotic setting and the adventures and so on. It’s even an interesting time period. But … what is it about?
Executive: What do you mean, ‘What is it about?’
Boss: What is it about?
Executive : Is it not clear from reading my work?
Boss: Errr … no.
[There’s absolute silence for the next two minutes as the Executive thinks of what to say. Then, … ]
Executive: I’ll think about it and let you know.
One of the tips revealed in this section are the set of over 45 different topics for your stories. When you complete this section, you will also know how to generate your own stories.
STEP 3 - The Reasons For Telling Your Great Story
Have you ever been in the following situation?
You are present when the person conducting the meeting is trying to relay a message by telling a story. Not only is the story deadly dull, you cannot but help ask the question, “Why is he telling me this?” Just as you complete this thought, you look down to stifle a yawn. When you look up, you know that this person has noted your boredom by the manner in which he avoids making eye-contact with you for the rest of the time. At the end of this session, you come to hear from the rest of your colleagues that they too were bored silly by this person’s presentation.
When you master this step, you will never waver from the focus of your story ... And no one will ever be bored when you tell a story.
STEP 4 - It's All About The People
Let’s take this example: you’re an executive in a corporation and need to make a presentation about the company’s newest product to potential investors. The product is a new line of perfumes which cater for women. You go out of your way to explain all of this and think that you can do convince your boss by telling a story.
You realise that you've failed in this when, at the end of your presentation, your boss says,
“I’m sorry, but I think you don't understand that the product applies to a woman, not a man,” [emphasis added].
With this step, from now on, you will ALWAYS describe your characters to perfection. The people you speak about will just come alive with the words you use to describe them ... EVERY SINGLE TIME.
STEP 5 - Paint Your Setting
Have you ever just wanted to converse with someone and find that you have nothing to say? Are your answers just monosyllabic ones? Would you like to be a more engaging conversationalist?
Here’s a very simple way in which you can do this. Read this paragraph and you’ll see just what I mean:
I am in the Kuala Lumpur International Airport waiting for someone to arrive. I begin to observe things around me. What I notice is this: The colours featured most in here are silver and blue because of the steel frames and the marble flooring. I know that one of the trees outside produces the jasmine flowers but I cannot smell them. All I hear are people speaking English but with a huge American accent. The taste of the coffee is strong as it is from one of the many ‘imported’ outlets like San Francisco Coffee or Coffee Bean. The air-conditioning must be set on "High" because I’m freezing!
From now on, you'll ALWAYS describe a place so well that your audience will feel like they've been there!
STEP 6 - Join The Dots
People often do not believe that the 'three act drama' in storytelling is used in business. Let me surprise you. Read the following passage.
[What is in black is usually the terms that marketing gurus use. What is in red is how the three act drama applies to the sales letter]
Part 1 - Act 1
Headline and Sub-headline –
these are intended to immediately capture the interest of your reader - the hero in this three act drama.
Introduce the problem - relate to the reader and explain product –
this is the part where the hero's main conflict and all that is at stake to him are stated.
... Do you understand why marketing gurus constantly say, "Only the long sales letter will work!" - that is simply because by setting out the long sales letter, you would have told a complete and compelling story of your product.
Believe me, this works!
STEP 7 - It’s All A Matter Of Style
I once had a conversation with a gentleman that went something like this:
Mr. X: Let me tell you the story of Adam. His father, Steven was looking after him. He was really a very nice guy but was born with deformities. He grew up in an unhappy home and his father used to abuse him. He ended up going to jail you know.
Now, I was confused. There were many thoughts going through my mind:
1.Was Adam a nice guy but born with deformities?
2.Was Steven a nice guy but born with deformities?
3.Did Adam grow up in an unhappy home where Steven used to abuse him?
4.Did Steven grow up in an unhappy home where Adam's grandfather abused Steven?
5.And really, who ended up going to jail - the grandfather, Steven or Adam?
With this step you will learn to have your own style of storytelling which will appeal to your audience and engage them in your great story.
Storytelling is for everyone, October 14, 2011, by Mayra Calvani
For several years, Aneeta Sundararaj has been helping writers through her website with countless articles, reviews and interviews. Now, she has compiled all her experience and expertise in her new book for beginner writers, How to Tell a Great Story.
After a brief introduction, Sundararaj takes beginners through all the steps necessary to become a great storyteller, from vital preparation, to understanding themes, to the reasons for telling a great story, to painting your setting and much more. At the end of the book there are five appendixes: on planning and analyzing your research material, information for market research, character profiling, copyright issues for storytellers, and a sample storyline.
Written in an engaging, yet thoughtful style, and combining quotes and written material from other authors, How to Tell a Great Story makes a helpful, information-laden reference book for any aspiring storyteller. What I really like about this book, though, is the new angle the author brings into it: the importance of storytelling not only for writing stories, but for other aspects of our lives. For example, knowing how to tell a great story can be helpful in the workplace if you work in marketing and publicity and must give a presentation. A story connects people in a way that a simple explanation or demonstration cannot.
Sundararaj points out the importance of timing and intonation; in other words, often it isn't just the story that's vital but how you tell it. It is a talent some people are born with but it is also a skill that can be learned and improved. The same logic works for writing. You may have a great story idea, but how you write it and execute it is what counts. The author's advice works for aspiring short stories writers, novelists, and anyone who would like to get better at storytelling for everyday use. Reading this book was informative and interesting and I look forward to more of Sundararaj's work in the future.
Practical advice for leaders, August 3, 2011, by Guy Ellis
Storytelling is often only thought of in terms of writing and being an author. What most people don't realise is that storytelling is also the tool by which all great leaders help their followers turn their vision, passions and values into action.
The single most important piece of advice I give every leader or 'want-to-be' leader that I work with is to learn how to tell a story. Telling stories crosses cultural, geographical, social and organisational boundaries because stories talk of what people do, translates ideas into action, relate to everyday experiences and touch a part of every human that has existed from the time when we first started to communicate with each other.
While written with authors in mind, Aneeta has tackled this enormous subject in a practical, down-to-earth way so that leaders from all walks of life can benefit from both her and her contributors experience.
A Great Resource for Budding Authors, August 1, 2011, by Brian Porter
Aneeta Sundararaj has bravely tackled a subject most tend to avoid in the modern world of 'self, self' self'. In short, she has written a book, designed purely and simply, to help others. In short, her book sets out to give constructive and informative aids to would-be writers and authors, to help them in their early efforts to achieve publication. As she rightly points out, we are all 'storytellers' but most people do not realize that just 'telling' a great story doesn't necessarily mean we are able to convey that story in written format. Her book is a wonderful, step by step guide that illustrates, with the help of useful information gleaned from a number of published authors, how to use nuns, verbs, and illustrative descriptive text in order to bring a story to life. For example, we are all able to come home and tell our family, "Hey, guess what happened when I was out?" The telling of such a basic story sounds simple, yes? But, if we want to put that story into words that a publisher or reader will find interesting, we need to 'flesh it out' and illustrate the story, by means of words that 'show' the reader exactly what happened, what the weather was like, who we saw, what we sad and how it affected us and so on.Although it sounds simple, any published author will tell you it is not always quite that easy. Finding the right words is often difficult and Aneeta sets out to show her readers just how to find those words. From the initial equipment a budding writer requires, through to ways of carrying our the necessary research required to create an effective story, Aneeta gives the beginner a basic grounding in all aspects of how to frame, format and put together a story and then, importantly, how to go about finding the right markets and possible publishers for their work. All in all, a thoroughly well thought out book, put together with care and deliberation and a must for all budding storytellers. Well done, Aneeta!
Brian L Porter
Author, A Study in Red - The Secret Journal of Jack the Ripper.
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