How to tell a Story
Using a story is one of the most natural things you do every day, and although you may not actively think about it, whenever you tell a story you should:
- Choose a perspective. Most stories are told in narrative form, which basically means that the narrator (not necessarily the author) is telling the story to an audience from a certain perspective. When you’re telling a story to your friends, you are the narrator, but the perspective may or may not be yours. So, that leads to different narrative styles, or ways to tell a story, like first person or third person narration.
- Include a plot. This is the main series of events within the story and affects what kind of story it is.
- Include characters. These are the people, things, concepts, or animals within the story.
- Include a setting. This should be the time or place of the story.
- Set up the characters and setting in a timeline that shares the events in some kind of logical order.
When to tell a Story
When do we tell stories? Well, the simplest answer is “all the time!” But, more specifically, we tell a story when we want to report events, and usually we want to report them for a purpose. You can use stories to…
- Share memories of your own past
- Talk about your daily life
- Share news and current events
- Explain parts of history, culture and religion
- Pass on customs and culture
- Provide support or evidence
- Provide context
- Give explanations about nearly anything
- Persuade others
This list could go on forever. We tell stories constantly, for all different reasons and in all sorts of ways!