Editor’s Note: This is the first of a series of Spotlights on your current VASA Board members. In the next few weeks, we’ll spotlight Nick Baskerville, Clint Atwater and Anette Stjarnhjarta. I’d love to see your picture, name and story up here in the near future.
What’s the value of telling stories for you? In listening to stories?
The biggest value I see with being a storyteller or a story listener is seeing the same perspective. A well-constructed and told story can give insight to others. It places listeners in the situation of the storyteller. If there is ever a magical device to help people see eye-to-eye, a story is definitely it.
What kinds of stories do you tell?
I tell personal narrative stories. The emotions tied to the stories run the spectrum. While unintentional at first, many of my stories have the humor of some degree in them. I’m now looking at telling Tall Tales, as well, as a way to incorporate doing stand-up comedy.
What is one of the best pieces of storytelling advice you have ever gotten? Who was it from and what was the context?
Write something every day. Actually, I got it from a mentor helping me with public speaking. It was a way to help have a cache of stories to use in public speaking. Writing every day was further reinforced when I read the book Storyworthy by Matthew Dicks.
What is your story development process?
Because I tell personal narrative stories, every day I try to write something that happened that day. I go back later to see if there is something that is noteworthy. It can be either by itself or a part of other thoughts that I have written down. In essence, building a personal narrative story is much like putting together a jigsaw puzzle.