This 613U mini-course is intended to help you understand the importance of storytelling in journalism or blogging. In August 2017 Paul Adams, Associate Professor of Journalist at Carlton University, gave a workshop on storytelling as part of the 613U project. Get a quick introduction to the topic by watching the video, which summarizes Paul’s workshop. Next, checkout our list of suggested resources to learn more about techniques or tools. Share any questions or comments in the forum section, or better yet pass along other ideas or resources of your own. We hope you get inspired to try something new.
Paul Adams, Associate Professor for journalism at Carlton University, gave a lecture on the importance of storytelling at an in-person workshop for 613u in August 2017.
So what are the types of stories bloggers or journalists tell? The following list was pulled from the American Press Institute:
- A profile. Find the people behind a story, the characters driving the issue. You can profile not just a person, but a place, an event, even a building.
- Explanatory piece. Show readers why something happen or how something functions.
Issues and trend stories. Ask yourself if there is a larger picture to explore. Trends are not exclusively related to culture or lifestyle; think crime or economy.
- Investigative. Look into wrongdoing, “follow the money,” analyze power struggles, and make use of available documents.
Narrative. A story with a character, scenes, and tension.
- Descriptive/Day in the life. The alternative to a narrative, focusing on a particular moment, such as a ride-along with the police, a visit to the new museum.
- Voices or perspective story. Have people tell a story in a unique way: Q&A, roundtable discussion, a rail of quotes, or vignettes.
Visual story. Photographs, graphics or illustrations might be the best ways to tell some stories.
If you are interested in the art of storytellings, whether for blogging or other reasons, Ottawa Storytellers is a community of people dedicated to practicing and preserving the art of storytelling in Ottawa. Or keep your eyes peeled for the next 613U workshop.
Pixar and the Khan Academy teamed up to create an entire free course on the Art of Storytelling.
For some shorter materials on this topic, check out the following online articles and videos:
- BBC – Ten Storytelling Tips for Journalists and Producers
- Forbes – Three tips on storytelling from WSJ Features Writter
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