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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tell a Tall Tale

With the explosion of modern media, the fine old art of storytelling has become practically a thing of the past.

These days, if it ain't got CGI, forget about it.

But to some of us, the raconteur is still a most welcome figure.

So, why not become one?

Here's my idea: Think of a story that seems, well, unlikely. Maybe you'll choose something that really happened, but it would be better if it were impossible. Perhaps a friend told you something once, even a joke, or you read a story somewhere, and said, "That couldn't happen." That would be perfect.

Now, write it down. Add lots of details, and as you're writing, be thinking of your presentation.

Then, practice it, again and again, until it comes out perfect. Be sure to use your voice, facial expressions, gestures--all of your body language--to add as much to the story as you can. Maybe even add a simple prop or two: a hat, or a stick.

Now, find an audience. It might just be your family around the table after dinner, but it would be better to have a larger group. Maybe you're in the Lions, or a Scout leader, or in a cycling or some other kind of club. Offer to provide a "program" there.

Or if your schedule permits, volunteer at a local school.

So write, practice, and tell a tall tale, in front of an audience. Imagine the laughter, the applause, and the satisfaction.

You'll be happier.

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