Thursday, August 03, 2017

Telling stories

I heard something today that made a great deal of sense to me. Stick with me on this one.

One of the folks in my program expressed an interest in grant writing. In a serendipitous fashion, shortly after my conversation with him,  I received an email from a local community foundation announcing an upcoming grant-writing-training session. I forwarded the email to the candidate that wanted to learn more about the skill.

He's an educated person, and he asked the training facilitator during the session, "What makes some grants successful and other grants fail? He said he got a very technical answer from the facilitator, which is what he expected. But an attendee at the training who actually approves grants for community projects or denies them gave him a more interesting answer. Fast forward to today.

Today we had a coaching session and I asked how the training went. He said it was a very good session and he learned a great deal about how to write grants.  He said he learned the nuts and bolts of the process, but the community rep gave him the most valuable advice.

The grant reviewer told him that any grant that expects to be approved have to answer the basic questions, but the grants that get approved not only answer the questions, but they must also tell a better story with their words.

I smiled when he told me that. I've known it for years, but it's always good to have validation. We as a species love stories. Some people can tell stories and some people give you the facts. 

The most valuable thing I've learned from blogging for over 10 years (every day) is how to tell a story. Sometimes my stories are lame. Sometimes they resonate. But it's doing it daily that helps develop the writer's voice. It's that voice that has the ability to tell stories. And that's what it's all about.

I know you are wondering when I'll get a fresh topic for my photos. Maybe tomorrow.


  1. Not only do we love stories, I firmly beleive we need them.

  2. It is a good lesson for us all. I have enjoyed the flower pictures so don't worry about a new subject. Zinnias were a favorite of my mother. Yours are most colorful.

  3. I was just thinking about your flower photos on your posts last evening and how they could maybe become a permanent feature.
    Of course if you want to change the theme I would be the last person to suggest otherwise..... :=))

    And I agree - there is very little that beats a good story. Though it is often hard to make your story come alive on the printed page.


  4. I agree, the stories tell more than the facts. A good story is always worth retelling too.

  5. Anonymous1:31 PM

    A good storyteller makes you feel that you were/are there & you do just that!!


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