Friday, October 22, 2010

And Now for Something Completely Different....

Sometimes I get frustrated staring at that little blinking cursor on the screen trying to force the words out of my brain for a story. (This is on a bad day of writing of course.) Although the words do have days when they flow, I've had days where my words are more stubborn than toddlers.

So I have to say, it was very interesting to try telling the story another way for a change. Storytelling. For someone who generally gets nervous about being in front of big groups of people, I picked a hilarious career. As a Children's Library Associate I spend a lot of time up front talking, reading books and singing more renditions of the itsy, bitsy spider than I can count on a hand. But storytelling was something completely new.

Granted, these weren't my own stories I was telling. It was part of a Thursday night Folktale Program I started. Normally I would choose books to read to the kids. But lately, I've been running out. So when there are no Folktale books for a country.... things get a little.... crazy. Needless to say I found myself last week in front of about 35 people telling the Slovak tale of Strawberries in Winter. This week, it was a Slovenian legend about the Predjama Castle. And something happened when I got up in front of a group to tell the story. They started adding to the story. I had kids come up to play some of the parts. The boy playing Erazem the mischevious knight said have a good meal in Slovenian as he tossed the cow over the castle wall, ( Erazem taunted his pursuerers by tossing them meals over his castle walls.) The small girl barely visible beneath the blanket and crown added a bit of irony to the part of the emperor in the story. It was interesting how much of a life of its own the story took on as we told it. It makes me wonder what kind of different shape the printed story takes in each reader's mind.

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