A friend of mine is great at writing a good story. When she tells a story, she pulls you in and has you on the edge of your seat wanting to hear more. Recently, while on a trip to Italy, she utilized social media to give random updates about her escapades abroad. Even the setup to her narration was smart – ‘gather round boys and girls.’ One story that she posted kept most of us on the edge of our seats, anticipating the next move. If it had been a book, it would have been a definite page-turner.
Another friend has the same gift. He retells personal stories or random tales about his children’s ‘bad little dog, Ms. Josephine’. All of them are entertaining.
I’ve never thought about the art of storytelling aloud. My focus is usually storytelling in writing. But in reality, we use our storytelling skills everyday. This article gives seven characteristics on how to tell a good story in the workplace, but I think the characteristics are also good for personal conversations. Basically, it’s about the setup – laying out the time, the place and the people – and then building from there to connect the dots. Make sure the information you’re sharing is relevant to the story, and as always, adding a little emotion never hurts either.