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Annette Simmons

Storytelling Moral Survival System: Part three

The Social Impact of Storytelling Over the twenty years since The Story Factor was first published technology has accelerated communication, and with it the speed of storytelling, beyond our wildest imagination. Amid the revolutionary growth of all this digital media, video, database mining, and social media, Apple founder Steve Jobs commented that the “most powerful person

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Annette Simmons

Women’s March 2017: My Personal Experience

It is 5:00 a.m. Thursday January 19, 2017. I have no plan except to drive my car 1,193 miles to “show up” in D.C. for the Women’s March. I gas the car; pick up Valerie, and swing by “Southern Maid” for a king cake. Images from “Thelma and Louise” excite and frighten me. We will

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Annette Simmons

Dark Magic: Tony Schwartz’s Abuse of the Story Arts

Most of this post comes from the July 25, 2016 issue The New Yorker by Jane Mayer you can read in full here. Storyteller and writer Tony Schwartz feels “deep remorse” for ghostwriting the 1987 bestseller The Art of the Deal an “autobiography” of Donald Trump that arguably crafted the beguiling character now running for

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Annette Simmons

The Secret of Storytelling: Take a bite

Let’s pretend I’m Eve and you are Adam. Don’t worry about what we are or aren’t wearing. So in my hand is this apple, and with it the secret to finding good stories. All yours, free of charge.  But, before you take a bite I have to warn you; there is a big downside. This

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Annette Simmons

Storytelling as dialogue: the back and forth of shared context

Uri Hasson uses fMRI scans to show how storyteller patterns of brain activity are significantly duplicated in the mind of a story listener.  But of more interest to me, he pinpoints the yawning gap between lab research and real life near the end of his talk (after 10:00) Does the neural coupling magic happen everytime you tell a good story? No. No,

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Popular Posts

Storyteller’s Confession: My Secret Mission

I’ve been trying to infiltrate the halls of power for decades. My secret mission is to increase the diversity of thought by teaching those without a voice how to tell their stories and by teaching leaders how to find and retell stories that broaden everyone’s understanding.

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Stories with a Moral Blueprint – part 8 of 8

We need a Magic School for Storytellers Thirty years before J. K. Rowling created Harry Potter, Ursula Le Guin’s Earthsea series imagined a magic school that taught apprentice sorcerers how to avoid abusing the power of magic. Le Guin points out early in the series that “even to light a candle is to cast a

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Stories with a Moral Blueprint – part 7 of 8

Truth in Storytelling When I wrote the first edition of The Story Factor twenty years ago, I began with the idea that people don’t want more information. They want faith in you and your positive intentions. I never suspected that two decades later we’d be discussing an explosion of stories that intentionally undermine this faith. Without

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Stories with a Moral Blueprint – part 6 of 8

The Moral Dilemmas of a Lion, a Scarecrow, and a Tin Man Frank Baum’s original introduction to The Wizard of Oz, written in 1900, made it clear that he felt children no longer needed the stereotypical “old-time fairy tale” that “may now be classed as ‘historical’ in the children’s library.” Baum claimed the time had

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Stories with a Moral Blueprint – part 5 of 8

  Blueprints for Building Trust Learning to drive was fun until I hit the mailbox. I burst into tears, blaming my dad, “You told me not to brake when turning corners!” It wasn’t my fault that he neglected to clarify I should brake before turning the corner so I could release the brakes while turning

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