How to use a Legend
Legends are adapted in modern literature and media more often than you think. . They’ve remained an important part of literature and storytelling because they are easily revised and renewed from generation to generation. A few points can help to assure the success of using a legend in storytelling:
- Make the details relevant and relatable for audiences.
- Create new interest in an age old story by updating details so that they are linked to today’s society and/or popular culture
- Build upon the same themes and major plotlines as old legends, but with fresh material
- The delivery style of legends is key.
- Whether orally or in writing, they should be told in a realistic way, unlike fairytales, which are more whimsical nature.
- They should be shared the same way a historical event would be narrated, which makes them believable for the audience.
- Legends end on a somewhat mysterious note.
- The audience or reader could be left wondering, “could this story be true?”
- Unexplained details leave room for the story to continue growing and changing
When to use a Legend
Legends were originally shared orally when storytellers wanted to pass on things that wouldn’t be recorded as official parts of history. As time goes on, however, legends seem to become more eccentric. Regardless, they have provided storytellers with content since the beginnings of oral tradition, and have been adapted by writers of all genres, from philosophy to comedy. They can be used in almost any genre of literature. Some of the most popular types of legends come in the form of ghost stories and adventure stories, which are suspenseful and usually have mysterious or strange characters, events, and details.