Take an Old Story and Make it New
"A bad writer borrows, a good writer steals outright!" Mark Twain
Great writers from Homer to Shakespeare, Leo Tolstoy to Toni Morrison, have borrowed ideas from the past and made them new. What makes them a great writer is that they can add their wit, their life experience, and their imagination to make it truly a new story. This works especially well with scary stories, folk tales, old fables and myths.
You too can borrow from the past and make something new in five easy steps.
1. First, find a traditional story, folktale or fable that you like.
2. Make a list of the five W's and H: Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How.
3. Change the details to fit your life experience, be creative.
4. Tell the story to a friend.
5. Then write your version. Read more…
It was a beautiful day, much like today. The sun was shining. It was springtime. The flowers were blooming. You could smell the springtime in the air. Two friends, best of friends were walking down a trail, walking through the forest. As they were walking along ... R-R-R-O-O-O-A-A-R-R-R ... out came a bear!
One of them saw the bear and took off running. He quickly climbed up into a tree.
The other one saw the bear too late. He knew if he tried to run the bear would catch him and eat him. So instead of running, he fell to the ground and pretended he was dead, because everyone knows ...Read More
Follow this link for three different versions of this simple fable.
And here is a performance of this story from a recent Summer Reading program:
My mother grew up in a large family with twelve kids. She was the youngest. My Aunt Clarabelle was her older sister. When my mother was a little girl my Aunt Clarabelle was like a second mother to her.
They lived on a farm in rural Ohio. Anyone who has lived in the country knows: no matter how clean your house, in the fall when it starts to get cold, rats and mice move inside looking for a warm place to sleep and something to eat.
Early one morning, my mother woke up before anyone else. She woke up her older sister. The two of them quietly went downstairs to the kitchen for an early breakfast. When they opened the kitchen door, there was a huge ugly rat in the middle of the kitchen table eating ...Read More
So we must find more creative ways to fund storytelling in the schools. There are a few art council grants, partnerships with museums, business sponsorship and PTA funding. My favorite source: several folks have come up to me after a public performance and asked what it would cost for them to send me to go to their children or grand children’s schools. As a generous benefactor they decided to step up and sponsor a program for their community. If you are interested in funding a program let’s talk. If you are interested in hosting a school program please give me a call or drop me an e-mail and lets discuss ways I can help you find funding!
SAVE THE DATE: Annual Twinflower Inn Writer’s Retreat January 15-18, 2016. More details in the next newsletter.
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