Stories from the Pandemic – Part 2

Story Power author Kate Farrell has released the next section of her “Stories from the Pandemic” series, take a look.

Stories from the Pandemic – 2

Once you’ve selected an incident that has all the elements of a story in this timely theme, next you’ll frame the story in sections using keywords and even images, if possible.

Draw the structure of the story any way you wish: with a storyboard to show the scenes, an outline to list its sequence, a narrative arc to show the rise and fall of action, on index cards—each card with a section of the tale–or with a mind map. Whatever form you use, you are now determining the shape of the story and filling in the structure with keywords and phrases.

This is not a script, but a framing with trigger words, drawings, and images. A written script tends to restrict a spontaneous telling, one that interacts with the audience.

How to structure a story to tell, using the “Zoom Studio” as a model.

Keywords and Phrases Only

1. Exposition
Invited to be part of a Zoom storytelling slam in April to take place in May.
Storytelling, a live performance art, pivoted to home-based, live, virtual shows
Just moved into a tiny studio apartment no wiggle room and  few staging options for a virtual event—didn’t ever imagine my studio would become an actual studio.

2. Challenge – Rising action
Problems of set up: lighting, higher position of laptop, moving furniture
Only one wall acceptable, free of clutter. Desk too heavy to move.
Can’t levitate the laptop. Online shopping w/ stores closed.
Active stool wiggles. Limited budget and space. Worried about age, wrinkles.

3. Creating the virtual setup: Rising Action
New folding table arrives. Laptop setup. How to raise laptop 10 inches w/ stuff on hand.
Camera needed to be aligned with middle of my forehead. Close up.
Moving the floor lamp with LED bulb and removing lamp shade.
Working inch by inch. Good thing I’m skinny.
Aiming the LED desk lamp. Face flooded with light. Wrinkles vanished.
Practiced on Zoom. Looked at the green light, not the screen.

4. Tech night rehearsal: Rising Action
Producers gave advice on tech staging, use of app, timing, run through
Review and practice looking at camera. Nervous.
Told story within time limit. Sound quality good.
Passed tech rehearsal Friday night for Sunday show.
Email from tech guy: I was the most professional.

5. Live Performance: Climax
Practiced the story obsessively all day Sunday on Zoom
That night set up and storytelling delivery all worked.
Came in second by one vote in the slam. Positive feedback.
Chat notes sweet. A producer said I was the best even though I didn’t win.
One comment from online audience: “My mum thought you were beautiful.”

6. Resolution
Ego boost. I was ready for the big time!
Ready for the next live virtual event for storytelling, a workshop, or interview
Just as long as I could arrange the moving parts of my studio in half/hour flat
Reassemble it back to functional living space, inch-by inch

Storytelling Slam Marquee with thanks to Six Feet Apart Productions

In Part Three, we’ll discuss the vital importance of visualization in preparing to tell a story.


Story Power by Kate Farrell

Story power

Secrets to Creating, Crafting, and Telling Memorable Stories

Stories are everywhere. The art of storytelling has been around as long as humans have. And in today’s noisy, techy, automated world, storytelling is not only prevalent—it’s vital. Whether you’re interested in enlivening conversation, building your business brand, sharing family wisdom, or performing on stage, Story Power will show you how to make use of a good story.