Thursday, October 17, 2013

Can You Write A Story?

Last evening, I subbed in a dinner/bridge group at our club. It was an evening of things happening that were not scheduled, nor expected. Someone running down the hall asking for a doctor, then another looking for the defibrillator, of which no one knew the location, an ambulance screaming up the big hill where the club sits, a friend being tended to by EMTs on the floor in the dining room, a fire engine blocking the way when I wanted to go home. When things had settled down and I made it home, the first thing I did was to sit down in the living room and tell my husband the story of all that had occurred. Yes, I told him a story.

At that point, I wasn't completely sure my friend was alright, but this morning the good news is that she is in the hospital and doing fine. They think she had a severe allergic reaction to something she ate. I had not gone to the dining room where she was being treated because I didn't want to add to the chaos, but I prayed for her all the way home.

There definitely is a story in all that happened that evening, and of course, my first inclination when I arrived at home was to tell my husband the tale. It had a beginning, a middle and an end, although not a very satisfying ending at that point. It had tension. It had emotion. It had sensory details. It was not just idle talk, the ..words to prove you can string them together in logical sentences part of the quote in today's poster.

How many times have you come home to tell your spouse or parent or whoever is at your house a story about what happened that day? If your listener doesn't turn around and walk out, you are able to tell a story that captures their attention. So there is no reason why you cannot also write a story. I could write the story that happened last night in much greater detail because I lived the story, I remember the concern on everyone's face, I remember feeling several emotions. When you write the story, you don't want to only 'report' it. That would be the stringing words together in logical sentences method. Tell the story as it happened remembering all those tools that help you make it a real story--emotion, sensory detail, building up the tension and more.

A website I frequent is uses the same quote every day. It says Everyone has a story. What's yours? Some of the stories posted at Our Echo are fiction while many others are nonfiction and even poetry. If you're not sure you can write a story, read a few. You can probably write as well if not better than some that are posted, while others are so well written that you can learn something from reading them.

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