Gut Rumbles
 

September 16, 2004

storytelling

I believe that most Southerners are natural-born storytellers. Maybe ALL rural people share that trait, but I notice it especially down South. Even poorly-educated people are good storytellers. They KNOW, almost instinctivly, what makes the difference between a good story and a boring tale.

It ain't the story that makes the difference. It's the way you TELL IT!

The people where I live know how to tell a story. They know how to give you just enough description of the scenery so that your imagination fills in the details and they understand the principle of Beginning, Middle and End. Hook 'em in the beginning... keep them listening in the middle... then surprise them at the end. And do it all in a slow drawl that shows you're in no hurry to finish.

A lot of the way I write comes from listening to good storytellers when I was young.

Comments

You should visit this place (http://www.storytellingcenter.com) during their annual festival. It's like a weeklong event.

Posted by: Deliverance on September 16, 2004 01:43 PM

Friends and family pick on my habit of jumping up and acting out the joke or story I'm telling. I can't stop myself. ;o)

Posted by: siso on September 16, 2004 02:49 PM

Oh Boy ! Now ya went and dunnit. My Grampa was a story teller par excallawnce. Johnny Walker ( Yup ! His real name), used to go down to the railroad roundhouse and tell tales of beautific " Fact enhancement". I will give an example.
My Grampa was a great outdoorsman. He had to be to pack the larder so him and Gramma and their four kids could eat. So one day in the cold Michigan winter, he went ice fishing. No, he didn't fish for ice, he cut a hole through the ice so he could catch fish. I wouldn't have to explain this to Northern people. Anyhoo, in his ardor to get to fishin', he didn't check the thickness of the ice, and walked out on Kerswill Lake a-carryin'his fishin' gear. Sure as Hell, he fell through thin ice. He hit his head when he went under, so he was disoriented went the cold water shocked him back to normal awareness. He had gone down at an angle, and couldn't remenber where he had broken through as the day was cloudy and his break through the ice point had dissappeared.
He was getting desparate because he was running out of air, and no break in the ice overhead to lead him to life giving safety. Then he noticed a stump at the bottom of the lake.
This led to a thought that he had fished over that stump last year. And sure as hell, he swam over to the stump and got out the hole in the ice he had cut last year. He always said he had a good memory. He said that his being alive was all the proof that was needed.

Posted by: waitaminnit on September 16, 2004 05:31 PM

That's a GOOD story!!!

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