Let’s say that you’ve narrowed down your story project and have a good idea of what you want to do and why you want to do this story project, the next big question is what medium to do want to use to tell this story?
I’ll use my great-great-grandmother, Mary Taylor again as an example. I knew I wanted to do a story project about her and I had decided that I wanted to focus on her journey from England to Utah with the Martin Handcart company. I also knew that I wanted to do something that would be appealing to kids. I figured that if it was approachable for kids, adults would take time to learn about Mary Taylor too.
So looking at the 100 story projects post, and narrow it down. My first run through I deleted things that weren’t about her journey. That got me down to about 40 Then I deleted those that would not be very appealing to children. That took off about 20 more. Next I looked again at which ones would really tell the story of her journey and not just aspects of her experience and would appeal to kids ages 5 to 10. That got me down to the following list:
- make a story book with illustration of Mary’s childhood and journey to Zion (did that – it is so close to being ready to publish)
- make that story book into an ebook
- make that story book into an enhanced ebook with sound etc.
- make that story book into a video with narration and background music
- make a coloring book about Mary’s life (I could probably adapt the illustrations from “My Grandma Mary” for this)
- design surprise balls that tell a story about Mary Taylor
- make puppets to act out stories from Mary Taylor’s life
- make a video of the puppet show
- put together a story box about Mary Taylor
Looking at this more focused short list you could do some more brainstorming and ask yourself are there some different media that I could use to expand this list. Here are some extra ideas that come to mind:
- make an animated video using claymation or other media
- make paper dolls for the characters in Mary’s story
- instead of having an adult illustrate the book have a child or children draw the images after learning about Mary’s story
The first five could be grouped together, because in completing the first one (make a story book), much of the work is already done for the next three. It is sharing it and enhancing it in different ways. Using different media. In some ways the story box could be the final end of several story projects about Mary Taylor all with the goal in mind of creating a story box about her life and/or her journey to Utah in 1856. The box could contain the story book and/or ebook, video etc, a coloring book, puppets and a script or scripts to perform or a video, and a surprise ball as a kind of summary of Mary’s story and trinkets to remind the kids what they learned about their ancestor. That would be really cool.
I didn’t make this list when I started the story book about Mary’s journey, but if I had I would then need to choose which story project to do first. The story box would be out because it is more appropriate as a long-term goal. Someone with more experience with puppets and script writing might pick that as a first project. But since my experience is mainly with books I would probably still pick that as my first project. Even the color book idea is a natural extension of the story book. If I was more comfortable with video that could be the starter project and then the book would be taken from still of the video. There are lots of options and mediums. Which one or ones you choose depends on you, your talents, your interests and your resources. The story book project turned out to be perfect for me because my niece was on board to illustrate it.
Does this example help you to see how to take a long list that you have brainstormed and narrow it down. There is not one right answer for a story project. Follow your intuition and move forward. This can be a fun process so let it inspire you. Then keep that vision alive as you take the many steps to complete your story project.
I’ve been inspired by this brainstorming exercise, I hope you have too. Now it is time for you to do something similar for your next story project!
- 100 Story Project Ideas (tellingfamilytales.com)
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