Chapter Eleven: Inspire With Your Storytelling

While finding time to write came be like having unplanned sex, the act of writing is more like making love. You cannot fake it. You must feel it. When I was writing the chapter from the book A Guide to Getting It: Achieving Abundance, which is part of the book series I publish, I spent days working to develop my model of what I call the 7 C’s of Change:

Conscious Awareness

Concern

Critical State

Crisis Point

Chaos

Choice

Change

I tried writing an explanation, and while the writing was effective, it was not inspiring.

Then I went to hear an author read from her book of short stories at the local community college. Actually, she didn’t read; she sat in front of the audience and told a beautiful story of a family in the Sahara and what it went through to find the lessons that she was trying to convey by telling the parable. The audience, including me, was mesmerized. When she concluded, she simply said, “You will find this and other tales of life in my book of short stories.”

I was inspired. I went home, grabbed a paper and pencil, and sat in my back yard. I wrote the story of my near-fatal car accident and how it had changed my life. I wove each of the C’s into the story, unobtrusive, but vital threads to keep the interest of the reader. In 45 minutes, I had written the 2500-word chapter. I changed a few sentences and added a bit to the end a few days later, but the essential story was in place in that short time. The chapter has become a huge transformational piece, and I have received countless responses from people about its life-changing effect.

I had a breakthrough of understanding that day. I realized that when I told a story, instead of trying to explain a concept, I could access that heart-center and move into flow with much more ease. Then I started to notice something else. When I edited other people’s writing, what I call “rivers of red ink” from corrections would diminish to almost nothing when the writer told a story. When I talked with my authors they would all say that when they felt most “in flow” ?without worry about how things would sound, if the spelling were correct, if the words were in the correct order?was when they were telling a story. Paradoxically, the less they thought about what they were writing, the more effectively they were able to convey their thoughts!

Everyone loves a good story?and those who can tell that story will reveal their love for words, for descriptions, for filling the senses, for making the pieces come alive.

Just recently, I finished rereading the entire Harry Potter series from beginning through the most recent book. J.K. Rowling is a master storyteller. And as I read through the books, I saw her writing develop from a pretty good writer, to one of the best I’ve seen at conveying her imagination via the written word. If you’ve only seen the movies, I highly recommend that you capture the magic and read the books. And you can tell that she loves each character, each scene, each plot and subplot.

Would you like writing exercises to help you integrate the lessons in this series? Go to http://www.clarityofvision.com/writingexercises.html .

For additional resources Marilyn provides to writers, go to http://www.clarityofvision.com .

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