The Fickle Muses

September 23, 2010

Engaging someone through electronic media is so easy!

All you really have to do is say what is on your mind, put it out there… and it will find an audience. Build it and they will come.

uhhh… not so much. To make it happen, you need to find the shaman who really knows how to do it.  And here is where to look.

Story tellers comprise the caste and guild that need to be consulted.

Really. If you want to get the word out, find a story teller. Content is their domain. Messaging is code for implanting kernels of thoughts in people’s heads. Good story tellers are experts at planting those kernels. Who knows what those kernels will grow into (or whether they will grow at all) because, thank g-d, people are still people.  But at the intersection of probability and statistics… over the long haul, more often than not, behaviors and results can be predicted particularly if ya use someone who knows what they are doing, and have done it before.

Having been a story teller utilizing various media for the past many,many years I also have the following caution –

Your niece or administrative assistant probably are not story tellers – simply because they can take a video with their cameraphone and post it online. Or know how to add transitions to PowerPoint. Not to say people don’t break-through on occasion. But the ones who show promise as story tellers need passion, courage, tenacity and creativity.  Experience counts. They usually have apprenticed for many years.

A story teller also needs to do other kinds of things.

Can you induce Awe?  Then you hold the keys to the kingdom. With enough noise, lights, smoke and mirrors – you will get someone into the tent.  Genies know how to engage for the longer term.

Tapping into the myths and legends of the collective unconscious is little technique that has worked, since, oh, the birth of civilization.

And then there are the old standbys of performance – particularly comedy and drama.

Further down the food chain (in no particular order) are:

  • A story that is mindblowingly New and Different – one I can retell for at least a few minutes before it becomes part of the vernacular –  Twit Cred.
  • A teaching story – with utility- News You Can Use.
  • And when all else fails – the other stuff that has worked since the birth of civilization – Sex and Booze.

What we as story tellers do cannot be undervalued. Synthesizing, Absorbing, Morphing, and Creating.

Did I hear someone say viewser?


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