I learned to tell stories by facing one tough crowd: college freshmen in my 8 a.m. English class. As audiences go, they’re delightfully candid. If they don’t feel engaged, they’ll close their eyes to let you know. Eventually, I learned that even the most sleep-deprived college student cannot resist the lure of a story that’s going somewhere…
What is Storytelling?
Storytelling is just what it sounds like â€“ a performer telling a story to an audience. No costuming or props required. Itâ€™s theater stripped to its barest form.
Storytelling has enjoyed a renaissance in recent years thanks to organizations that promote telling as the art form it is. A well-told story requires a chiseled narrative and a re-living performance. The result is a magic synchronicity in which performer and audience inhabit the same theater of the mind.
I’ve told stories in over 100 shows across 9 states, performing at theaters, clubs, coffee shops, book shops, art festivals, and galleries. In stories ranging from 5 to 45 minutes, I try to use humor and earnestness to probe my own misadventures for some bit of truth to share.
My television appearances include the Mortified Guide to Pop Culture, part of the Mortified Guide series available on Netflix and Prime Video, and Stories from the Stage: Stand Up, an episode of the storytelling series that airs on the World Channel.
I’ve performed at the Philadelphia Book Festival, the Boston Storytelling Festival, and the annual League for the Advancement of New England Storytelling conference. I’ve won the Massmouth “Big Mouth Off” and a Moth GrandSlam, and was awarded Massmouth’s Storyteller 2.0 Award for â€œengaging a new generation of tellers.â€ A two-woman show I performed with my mom was featured in the Ozaukee Press and a profile of me, written by fellow storyteller Cheryl Hamilton, is available on the Massmouth blog.
The story of my disastrous first day teaching a college class:
A story about terrorizing my little sister via the (otherwise non-violent) board game Clue:
The dark side of anger management:
The story of my first kiss:
My pitiful teenage attempts at “drug experimentation”: