Marni Gillard    Storyteller, Storyteacher
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Tips for Learning to Tell a Tale

1. Fall in love with a story.
Let a story lure you into telling it. Then ask: What do I love about this story?
2. Trust the story to teach you how to tell it.
Your intuition drew you for good reasons. Step inside and let it teach you.
3. Start imagining it yourself or telling it to just anyone in a conversational way.
The story will start to be like a comfortable friend.
4. Experiment with many different ways to see (smell, hear, etc) the story's details:
  • Sketch the story's journey incident by incident.
  • Draw a map of the world of the story from a bird's eye view.
  • Symbolize the feelings of the story's beginning, middle, climax and end through a collage, a finger painting, a dance.
  • Freeze frame in your mind's eye or on paper the tale's most powerful images.
  • Tape yourself reading/telling the tale.
  • Chunk the action into scenes in some visible way through art or rearranging a room's furniture.
  • Let yourself just play with the sounds of phrases you like. Write one or two down before bed so they can sink into your consciousness.
  • Tell the story out loud to affirming friends or while you walk, garden or clean.
5. Tell the story in YOUR words.
Memorizing pulls your attention away from experiencing the tale and puts it on recalling words. Sure, hold onto phrases you love, but tell the pictures, not the words. Once you are comfortable recollecting the tale, you can go back and incorporate lines you want to keep. Remember humans tell stories naturally. Telling a tale can be simple or dramatic in style, but let it come from a natural place in you.
6. Let go of a story (for a while) that isn't "working."
It might be too demanding or a story that reveals too much about you. It may be a story to return to later. Don't quit because telling takes effort, but listen to your intuition.
7. Retell and retell and retell and retell.
Returning to a story over the years is what will help you truly make it your own. Don't think, "Oh, they've heard this." We need to return to stories. They teach us and reaffirm truths in us every time we hear them...

Last but not least, have fun. Enjoy the ride!


If you need any additional information, please feel free to contact Marni. Picture of Marni Gillard
Marni Gillard

833 Parkside Avenue
Schenectady, NY 12309 USA
(518) 381-9474

marni@marnigillard.com
www.marnigillard.com
All Materials Copyright 2004-2013 by Marni Gillard.
All Rights Reserved.



Home   What's New   Watch Marni Tell
About Marni   Bio   Past Work   What Others Say
Publications   CDs   Books   Articles in Print
Bring Marni As   Performer/Teacher   In-service Instructor  Poemteller
For Adults   Story Studio
About Storytelling   Articles   Bibliographies
Contacts   Marni   Webmaster