Monday, July 30, 2007

Workshop #1

Click here to view all Story Starters themes!! Now that you've found the story you're going to share it's time to organize it. If you have your Story Starter you'll want to go through and read the first few pages to help you understand better how to organize your thoughts and get your story on paper. The Notebook in the back of the Story Starter will give you a place to jot down other questions, ideas and memories from answering the questions in the Story Starter. Your Story Starter has TONS of questions, broken down into theme and time lines that will help your story have structure and depth. Handwriting is a personal and important part of who you are. Research has shown that writing by hand also helps to stimulate creativity and evoke memories by actively using both sides of the brain. So don't shy away from the good old pencil....use it! We'll go to the keyboard later.

I'd also like to recommend a Writing and Publishing Guide. This is a great tool for everyone. This guide goes through a "Writer's Checklist", Tips on Interviewing, Determining Purpose and Audience, Developing Characters and Details, and Publishing Introduction. This is a great reference for adults and children and can be used to help with any story, memory book or scrapbook just like the Story Starters.

As you begin to write your story, start with the first section of questions. Read through all the questions and circle the ones that pertain to your story. Once you've decided on your questions, flip to the back of the Story Starter to the Notebook. On the right side of the page where it says "1 Outline" bullet your answers to your questions. Keep it simple and to the point. You can also make image notes in the box on the same page. Use that area to write down ideas for the visual images that go with your story, i.e., marriage certificate, picture of old house, blue ribbon from state fair, tickets from opening night, etc.

Once your bullets have been listed, go to the left side of the page under "2 Write" and start answering your questions using your bullets. At least one sentence for each bullet, but more if you can. Here's where your story starts to take it's form. Write as much or as little, but this is where the bread and butter of your story takes it's course. Don't worry about spelling,'s the "sloppy copy". You'll have time to spell check and type up a final copy later.

Open your Story Starter and get to work!! The size of the Story Starter allows you to take it with you everywhere you a purse, briefcase, suitcase, diaper bag....write your story anytime!! Check back next Monday for the next step in the Online Workshop Series.

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