Whenever I have heard a really good storyteller, the one thing that always comes to mind is how real did the person make that story for me. I like to hear a storyteller tell about something they really know, not just read or heard about, but actually experienced. when I hear a teller spin about something they really donít seem to understand, it shows, painfully.
For instance, I have heard Hopi Storytellers tell great stories about their culture and truly spiritual narratives about their origins. When they tell it, it becomes real to me. It becomes real for me, because of the skill of the teller certainly, but also the experience of the teller with those stories. They are a part of their life.
Another example, I could tell stories about growing up in New York and the difference between a New York hot dawg and an Arizona hot dog. I have experience in this and a personal opinion about it. Even if you had never tasted a New York hot dawg, I could help you taste it, as I had. I cannot tell a Hopi birth narrative nearly as well. I have not had that immersion or study into their culture to make it real for you. A skillful teller can overcome those boundaries however, but these are rare.
It is vitally important therefore to remember to tell what you know. Look around you and tell about your experiences and the lessons that can be learned from your real life. You will draw your audience in to your telling in a very powerful way.
Tell What You Know Author: Mike Abrams Copyright 1997, Storyteller.Net