Friday, April 10, 2009

Frame your story well...

A story has a limited amount of time to capture interest, whether that story is told through a book, a movie, a TV show, or the spoken word. The art of storytelling doesn't lose elements because the medium changes. The conveyance of the story may change but the story craft itself remains.
Think about your favorite stories. What elements are present in those stories?

  • Intro
  • Main Content
  • Outtro
These basic elements are important to all stories. As an English teacher once said to me, say what you are going to say, say it, and say what you said. This format holds true for musical compositions, verbal stories, best-selling novels, the most recent movie.....
What else holds your interest once you have begun to experience a story? Pictures, whether seen or imagined, must be compelling enough to hold interest. Audio of some sort must consistently run throughout the story.
So if you are making a blockbuster, award-winning video, include the essentials! Make sure your video has an intro! All the great films I know have great intros and most of them are memorable tunes.
Have music throughout your story, under the narration if you want. Without a tune, you have lost my attention - what about keeping the attention of those digital natives?
Good stories involve a conflict and a resolution. Think about your favorite TV show. Every episode has a problem and a solution. The story holds your interest, at least as long as the show or you wouldn't watch it.
Give your story a satisfying ending, one that calls it to memory like that catchy tune you can't get out of your head. That's how blockbusters are made and spread - through people. Speaking of people - please use correct spelling, grammar, no cursing (or euphemisms), and the human propensity for pattern making.
You the video-maker have about 3 seconds in which to grab the attention of your audience. In those famous words - whip it good!

Photo courtesy of brentdanley available at covered under a Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.0 Creative Commons license.

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