There are those rare people who can make stories come alive with their voices and bodies. True storytellers are rare – many people know how to tell a joke well, how to tell a funny happenstance or exaggerate something that happened to them. Few are the people who can make up a story on the spot and tell it in a way that makes it seem real and true and exciting.

I don’t know if I’ve met anyone yet who has come close to the way I imagine a perfect storyteller. Perhaps the kind I imagine only exists in books – the bard, traveling from inn to inn, paying for his or her meals with a story, with a tale of valor or wisdom or strife. Perhaps perfect storytellers can only exist when written down in words, when described with such things as “fiery eyes” and “a voice like no other” and “commanded attention without effort, a presence which filled the room easily.”

People don’t sit around fires and tell stories they make up – no, today everything is based on old legends or stories or the Disney versions of those stories, and people discuss politics around the fireplace, and only tell their children stories. Is storytelling a lost art then?


7 thoughts on “Storytellers

  1. My grandpa was a great storyteller. I could listen to him for hours. I do think it’s lost and possibly because we sadly don’t spend enough time together in the peace and quiet. We are either on our way somewhere or the television is on or we keep saying “just a minute.” My grandpa HAD the time.

  2. I’ve always thought of myself as a good joke/story teller.

    Now that we are adopting two children, our little 4yr old boy begs me every single night to tell him a story.

    Gosh, I love that. πŸ™‚

  3. I don’t think I’ve ever really been in the presence of a great story “teller”. Story writer… absofruitly (as SF would say…). My brother can tell jokes, and can tell you about a movie (almost verbatim) re plot and what the characters did and said… but when it comes to making up stories? Well… I’m looking forward to watching the new Adam Sandler movie (Bedtime stories)… and perhaps, one day… I can become a story teller… by getting LOADS of writing practice… πŸ™‚

  4. Ms slighlty,

    When my kids were growing up I took them to breakfast every Wednesday and told them old stories from my youth. (Which is still in progress by the way!)

    Somewhere along the way I decided to put them to paper and began to call myself a writer.

    I am sure if we have grandchildren I will carry on the tradition.

    You are good storyteller too, so keep the faith.

    Dr. B

  5. Hope it isn’t because tonight I had to create one with voices, accents and even demonstrate the funny duck walk of the boy who grew to be strong even though he couldn’t walk properly… please remind me next time to keep the nationalities in the story to one hmph

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