A father, writer, graduate student, husband, friend and traditionally published author of A Dude’s Guide to Babies: The New Dad’s Playbook, I’m here to talk about how you can examine your own life and make it something worth writing about. Or, if not worth writing about, at least making the writing more good. (That was an intentional joke, there. If you see what I did?)
I’m here to make your social life better through writing. How, you might ask, is this possible? Good question. Wish I had an answer. Or — No, wait. I do have an answer. It’s by helping you learn what are good stories worth telling and what should never be discussed in public.
When anything happens to us, we automatically are interested. But that doesn’t mean other people will be riveted. If you want good party chat material, you’ve got to learn what makes for a good story to tell. You want the guests at the party to see you coming and shove people out of their circle to make room. You don’t want people shoving people into your way so they can run and hide.
Trust me. I know this from experience. See, I’m an introvert of the highest level. I can’t stand idle chit chat and just standing around talking makes me break out in hives. However, I’ve learned that if I can have stories to tell, a way to make people laugh and have a good time, I don’t actually have to stand around uncomfortably trying to find something to discuss. It’s like stand-up comedy, only without the possibility of pay and there’s no HBO special in your immediate future. Again, trust me. I know this from experience.
I have been a professional writer for the entirety of my working life. I first worked as an ink-stained wretch at several newspapers in Florida before joining the enemy and becoming the chief public relations flack for the University of Florida’s College of Engineering. Since then, I’ve been a full-time freelance writer and presentation consultant. In addition, I’ve been a teacher at all levels of education from first grade through senior in high school, along with the occasional tutoring of college-level students.
Writing requires more than the ability to mash your fingers in a certain pattern on a keyboard. You also need to have a story worth telling. I’ve been an inveterate liar and storyteller for as long as I’ve had the capability of opening my mouth and spilling forth slightly comprehensible sentences. I tell stories all the time. Most of them are more true than not. Or at least partially true. As far as you can prove, anyway.
That picture up there? That’s me, seconds after leaping from a perfectly good airplane 14,000 feet above the ground. That makes for a good story. Why I jumped from a perfectly good airplane 14,000 feet above the ground makes for an even better one.