Story Wise Wrap: August 2017

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My first professional job was as a community lawyer at the North Melbourne Legal Service.  It was the job I imagined having all through my law degree, it was my dream job. 

In that job I was required to write a monthly report and which was always a chore, a time where I had to stop my forward momentum, to think about the past, assess, count, report and comment on where my work was going.  The report was for the monthly meeting of the volunteer committee of management and the report was really all they had to go on to know what was happening in the place they were responsible for. 

All of this is by way of saying this little Story Wise wrap of what I’ve been up to in over the month is similar.   

But even though I begrudged doing the legal service monthly reports, when it was done there was a level of satisfaction, a moment in time to stop and appreciate the progress that had been made.  And I grew to enjoy them.

So I will imagine I have a Story Wise committee of management, and in the spirit of those legal service reports, here is my report for the month for Story Wise.

(Great, I am off to a good start, I have filled out half a page without saying anything.  I am peddling fast under the water, but not much to show for it. Here goes nothing.)

The new venue for Story Wise Women was a great success.  We had about 35 women attend and ten stories, and Katrina and her sister, who manage The Good Room, put on a wonderful supper and set the room up beautifully.  The event is gaining momentum and a following, with a little help from Facebook ads, but gee Facebook ads beat walking the streets with flyers.  

Story Wise Woodend was beautifully hosted again by Ann Bolch last month and it is very nice to hand over the reins every so often. 

I am still beavering away writing: I have the footy piece back at the drawing board for a complete redraft, a storytelling workshop manual being chipped away, plus a public speaking curriculum, the TEDx talk, as well as a story for the monthly story nights.

It might sound like a lot, but I have discovered micro habits, and it suits me very well.  The aim is to write every day, as little as a paragraph for each of the projects I have on the go.  This keeps the idea moving forward, the task is never overwhelming, and combined with a daily habit tracking app, enables me to be productive and focussed on a few things at a time. 

Last week I travelled to Adelaide to run a train the trainer day long session with some amazing women working as facilitators and coaches for women in the rural and agriculture sector of South Australia.  I was training in a project I did over five years ago, called Weather The Storm: Women Prepare.  It is wonderful to think of the program getting a new lease of life, and the days training reminded me of my great love of the circle process for any kind of group meeting. Teaching circle work will become part of a women’s leadership program I am starting to plan for next year.  More on that to come.

So I know there’s not many statistics here, and don’t think I haven’t noticed - no files opened, no new clients, no contracts signed, but I am thinking about it, a lot, and I will be adding a new micro habit to the list, ‘developing offerings for next year’. 

yours in story,

Kate

Story Wise Wrap: July 2017

women's football

The month of July at Story Wise has seemingly evaporated.  A couple of days at Victoria’s first Creative Summit, another day out that promised to have me speaking my way to success, then school holidays, and whoosh, the month has gone. 

In the background I am working on a personal essay about my years playing footy.  The personal essay is a writing genre that I love.  It combines memoir with ideas, beliefs, observation and persuasion, and in structure is quite similar to public speaking.

Speaking of which, I will be giving a TEDx talk in Bendigo in October, about personal storytelling, connection and ancestry, and so I am in the middle of wrestling this mass of story experience and thinking, into a concise, story filled, logical, informative and inspiring speech! No easy task. 

Both storytelling nights continue to grow and be appreciated by tellers and listeners alike.  I have been struck by a parallelism the nights have to a football match.   Well you may wonder how they are related - it is the unknown and unfolding nature of each story night, co-created by the participants, that reminds me of the unknown outcome of a footy game.  It is how the theme and motifs recur at unlikely places through the night, and how the night becomes a whole new story, made up of stories.

I am really enjoying writing at the moment and want to clear the decks so I can do it as much as possible.  Which means giving up something else, and in the short term that something is podcasting.  So this week will see the Story Wise Woodend Pause Podcast episode and then … a pause, probably until the end of the year.  I will keep recording, dividing and saving stories from the nights, until I, or someone else, is ready to create a season of podcast stories. (If you’re interested, drop me a line).

Until next month, catch the stories as they unfold.

Kate