From: Dr Eric Miller, Chennai, May 2023.
Director, Chennai Storytelling Festival (February), and ,
"Storytelling by and for adults" series (first Monday of the month),
Here are 4 suggestions regarding storytelling
(and videoconferencing) –
1) Videoconferencing is generally a very intimate
medium. Most participants' faces would be only
approximately 12 inches from the electronic
image of your face.
I suggest: Of course one must project one's
voice, but ... you might seek to speak especially
gently to, and with, your listeners.
Please resist any temptation to declare or
announce your story as you are telling it.
Just take your time, get into the story, and
bring it to life. Let it "grow on you", and on us.
Do not "force" emotion into your telling.
You might try slowing down, and even
pausing, at crucial moments in your telling,
to let things "sink in".
2) You might seek to mostly alternate between
looking into the camera – to give all viewers a
sense of having eye contact with you – and
looking at the image of a person just below the
camera. (Zoom allows one to move the rectangles
around – one can drag the rectangles to different
locations on one's screen. It is a good idea to
place the rectangle showing one of your favourite
listeners directly underneath your camera.)
3) Do not try to memorise the words. Just
memorise the "steps" in the story (please see
below), and improvise the words. This is
especially the case when telling a story that
was written by someone else.
4) A good way to prepare to tell a story is to
make a list of the "steps" in the story – including
important things characters say to each other.
Next to the description of each "step", one can
make a note of the emotions and thoughts of
story characters at that moment.