I just watched 4 short videos by Ira Glass on storytelling. If you write prayer letters, if you make presentations to supporting churches, if you teach Sunday School, or if you just want to improve your speaking and writing for whatever reasons, I encourage you to view these short videos. Here are my short notes for these short videos.
The basics of a good story
Two basic building blocks: (1) The anecdote. A sequence of actions. (2) The moment of reflection. Reflecting on the meaning of the story.
Finding great stories
The moment you write the story on paper or record it to video, it is trying to be a bad story. Get rid of the boring parts. Be ruthless in editing.
On good taste
The first stories you write and videos you produce will not be very good. You have good taste and want to do good work, but your skills are not honed. Persevere.
Two common pitfalls
(1) Be yourself. Don’t try to mimic others’ speaking or writing. (2) Don’t talk about yourself. Don’t turn someone’s story into an autobiographical time to talk about yourself.
I recommend these to anyone wanting to improve their storytelling, writing, or videos.