Six Ways to Tell a Story (Excluding Writing)

     When someone says 'story-telling', my automatic thought is: writing. This is completely true, but there are so many different ways to tell stories. Ways that can range from images, to words, to a tune.

     As writers and story-tellers, we need to be aware of the different forms stories come in, and reflect this in our writing. There are more ways than black letters on white paper to draw readers in.


     There are six methods of story-telling apart from writing that my brain has come up with.





1) Music: Music does have some writing involved, but it is the combination of lyrics, a solid beat, and voice that form something magical. Songs tell stories without having to include too many words. The word choice, any rhymes, and the sudden shift in the bridge--which could be compared to the climax in a novel--create a story. This is why we connect to music so much: its stories, whether break-ups or love songs, resonate with our life experiences.



2) Dance: I am a dancer. Not a very good one, but I do love the way our bodies can bend to music in order to tell a story. Stories can be told through a dancer's expressions, speed of movement, type of actions, and how they react with other dancers around them. A leap could be in joy, or in danger. You don't need to have words in order to communicate emotions.



3) Comics: Comics really hit the mark for short, snappy story lines binding words with images. Oftentimes comics rely on the reader's notice of the characters' surroundings (portrayed in images) in order to provide valuable information in the plot.



4) Film/Drama: I know I shouldn't be grouping these two together, but they are very similar in how they tell a story. The initial script is given, but from there it really just depends on the actors, actresses, (cameramen/women for film) and directors to show the audience the story. The acting and how the characters and plot are delivered can really make or break these two ways.




5) Art: Art is a beautiful, abstract thing. By combining colours, shapes, and different mediums (clay, paint, pencil, etc.) a single image can draw you in and let you explore its story and purpose for hours. Art also allows a person to interpret its story in a way other forms often can't.




6) Orally: Last but not least, the way people have been telling stories since the beginning of time, really. From those stereotypical camp-fire ghost stories that make you wish camps had proper bathrooms, to just telling your friends how your day was, oral story-telling is amazing. Tone, enthusiasm from the story-teller, and word choice really showcases the story-teller's personality and pulls the reader in.



Do you tell stories in any way apart from writing? Which of these six if your favourite or least favourite? Let me know in the comments; I'd love to hear your thoughts!


Comments

  1. YESSS! I love these various methods of story telling and adore this blog post. Definitely makes me think more about all sorts of media that I take in and the stories involved.
    Lovely post!

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    1. Thank you! I also love telling stories in different ways. It really stretches me in a creative and mental way, which is great. Thanks so much for reading and commenting, Kat! :D

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  2. This is such an interesting post. Write now I'm doing a final project about censorship and storytelling, and I'm trying to include a broad definition-- books and movies and video games and myths. Its really interesting. Thanks for the post!
    Shanti @ Virtually Read

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    1. That sounds like an interesting project! You're very welcome for the post; I had lots of fun writing it. Thank you for reading and commenting! :)

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  3. YES! I love this! And I totally agree that writing isn't the only form of storytelling...omg, I love how music tell stories. That's probably my second favourite? (Writing/books being my first favourite forEVER.) And also of course films and shows and things. I adore them.
    My least favourite is probably dancing. I honestly don't usually see the story in it. Eeek. I'm not good at interpreting things! ;D

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    1. Writing has to be my favourite method of storytelling too. Nothing beats a good book or written story, but other forms do come close. I can understand why the story in some dances might be hard to find (I haven't been that good at seeing it until I started to choreograph for my dance class). But if the dancers do it well, I find it really easy to see the story. Thanks so much for reading and commenting, Cait! :)

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  4. This is such an awesome post! As someone who enjoys writing I tend to forget about all the other ways we can tell stories (especially dance - I'm an atrocious dancer, to I like to forget that one exists at all!), but it's such an amazing thing that everyone can have some way of communicating a story, whether they like writing, or art, or can play an instrument.

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    1. Thanks Laura! Yes, it's so cool to think about how so many people can tell stories in any form they love. (Don't worry about the dance one; it's a really hard but fun type of sport/creative release). Thanks for reading and commenting! :D

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