Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Getting Ready to Travel, and Thinking about Stories

I have a short trip on tap this weekend, and I think it's going to be a lot of fun. I'm heading to the fair city of Philadelphia to wallow in stories with 5 storytelling friends. The plan is to work intensively on our work--crafting stories, discussing technique, character development, framing and all those details that make a tale memorable and worthy of being told.

So today I'm packing. It's been at least 8 years since I last flew, and now I am learning about all the new restrictions and figuring out what I can pack and what I can't. That means a trip to the store to get the right sizes of toiletries, something I hadn't really thought about. I remember now why I decided I didn't want to fly anymore, but that decision doesn't make sense if I want to go places outside of driving distance, so I need to learn the new ropes. Because this fall, we're planning a trip to England and we'll most certainly be flying there!

I have been thinking about what story to work on too. There are so many in my mind that I want to develop. I realized that in recent years I have been moving more and more towards telling stories from history--both factual and legendary tales, most of them centered in my state of West Virginia and in the Appalachian region. I still tell many folktales, certainly, and have not lost any my love of those, but the stories of my home state really call to me and there are amazing tales that need to be told before they are forgotten or only recorded in archives, hidden from view and ear.

So do I bring one of those stories with me? Or should I add to my store of folktales? Or work on one of my stories for this summer's library programs? So many choices, and which will be most worthy of this rare opportunity of time and colleagues who can provide the much-needed feedback? I think I will bring both stories, and let the one that speaks loudest to me at the time be the one that gets attention.

So the story that comes home may be of salvation via a flaming Christmas tree in the early frontier days of these mountains, or it may be of a girl who loves a white bear, or the strange Welsh tale of King Arthur's cave? Such a richness of choices! Which would you choose?

Copyright 2012 Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.


Brighid said...

I used to love flying, not so much anymore. People are so sloppy dressed, and common manners have gone by the way it seems. Now I try to go in small commuter jets, as the whole experience seems to be much better on them.

The burning Christmas tree would be my choice.

Have a good time!!!

storytellermary said...

Have fun! Shoes that are easy to slip on and off help.
. . . and you can just pour your shampoo and such into small bottles you might already have on hand. There's no rule that they have to be factory-sealed or anything.
It is frustrating that the rules change so much . . . knitters are constantly being flummoxed by changes in rules.

Sue said...

I would do exactly as you are doing....choose in the moment!

And remember, you can always put toiletries in a waterproof bag and pack them in the suitcase you are checking. That's what I do, and I find it much easier than following all those rules about size and oz. to carry toiletries on with me...


JJM said...

I'd listen to what the other tellers present, then go with something very different -- if they all do history, you come in with the folktale.--Mario R.

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