Now that all the cool kids have phones and computers with the intertubes hooked up to them twenty four hours a day, all the cooler-than-those-kids kids have gone back to the most basic of human entertainment–one person telling a stories to a group of friends. The magic of a well-told tale is unlike anything else, captivating and engrossing, driving the imagination, and all just with the power of the human voice. A recording does not do justice–it masks the tension in the room, the drawn out pauses, the twitch of a hand, or the raising of an eyebrow.
Last year, the Decatur Book Festival hosted a storytelling session in this mold–a session put together by the folks at The Moth, and held at Eddie’s Attic. Not only did the listening room fill up, but the outside patio filled up, then the stairwell, then the alley outside the stairwell. The reporter from Publishers Weekly showed up five minutes before the event and quite literally was unable to reach the door.
So I was really happy when WABE-favorite Kate Sweeney sent me an email letting me know that her series, True Story! is coming to Decatur. According to the blog, True Story is “A night of tantalizingly true tales told by rogue writers and nervy journalists. All readers also bring fascinating, often funny written artifacts from their past–love letters never sent, replies from Shaun Cassidy’s fan club, etcetera–and tell the stories of those artifacts.”
So put it on your calendar–True Story! Wednesday, April 13, 2010 8pm, Kavarna Bar and Coffeeshop.
But because it’s Decatur, we don’t get just any True Story! evening. For us, they bring in the heavy hitter:
LA Times Reporter and creative nonfiction author Sam Quinones will take the “True Story!” stage to discuss his bold brand of reportage, tell some true stories of his own, and to present a workshop on telling your own true true tale.
“Tell Your True Tale” workshops get writers to think of their own experiences and of those around them as raw material for avoiding writer’s block. We’ll work to make each nonfiction story read like fiction. By insisting on stories told in limited space, the “True Tales” approach forces writers to hone their thoughts and imagination, eliminate unnecessary words, make the hard choices that are part of strong writing, no matter the genre.
April 13? How else are you going to celebrate the Sesquicentennial of the fall of Fort Sumter? Secede? Declare war? Heck no! Go hear some great stories.
Here’s more info.