See you this Thursday!

Hi Everyone,

I’m looking forward to seeing you on Zoom this Thursday! If you want to tell a story, send me an email between now and Thursday. Or you can log in early the night of the show and let me know then.

Below is the Zoom info. See you soon 🙂

Paul

Topic: FGS: The Kindness of Strangers – Stories of unexpected help

Time: Oct 21, 2021 07:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83715122962?pwd=eUZCbW5LSXZ4ZkIwTk9pVW01b28wQT09

Meeting ID: 837 1512 2962

Passcode: 201283

One tap mobile

+12532158782,,83715122962#,,,,*201283# US (Tacoma)

+13462487799,,83715122962#,,,,*201283# US (Houston)

Dial by your location

        +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)

        +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)

        +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)

        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

        +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)

        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)

Meeting ID: 837 1512 2962

Passcode: 201283

Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kduD1Gfkm8

FGS: The Kindness of Strangers – Stories of unexpected help

Our next show is October 21 at 7pm. The theme is The Kindness of Strangers – Stories of unexpected help

I’m willing to admit that I might be the only one who enjoys it when Oscar winners get played off the stage for thanking too many people in their acceptance speeches. I love it when someone thanks the best boy and the dolly grip. When else are the gaffers and second unit directors going to get a shoutout on national television? I don’t know whose job it is to make sure a sandbag doesn’t fall from the rafters onto George Clooney’s head but that guy definitely needs to get a thank you from someone.

That’s why this month’s theme is “The Kindness of Strangers.” I know somebody somewhere has helped you at some point. They might have taken a chance and hired you when you didn’t have all the experience the want ad called for. They might have offered you a place to stay when you had nowhere else to go. They might have given you a random compliment when all you needed was one person to say you were doing a good job. Each one of us has been helped by a stranger who didn’t have to.

Remember to practice your story out loud on as many people as possible and time yourself when you’re doing it. All stories have to be under 8 minutes. Stories can be as short as you want but not over 8 minutes. If your story goes long, someone else who practiced for weeks might not get a chance to tell. Stories also have to be clean in both language and content. Send me an email or give me a call if you have any questions about that.

The rest of the rules and guidelines are below:

Workshops are a great way to get feedback on a story you’re working on. Here is one I highly recommend:  https://www.meetup.com/Fresh-Ground-Stories-Storytelling-Workshop/

I’m also happy to help people with their stories. Send me an email and we can set up a phone call.

If you like to work alone, this is the best book I’ve ever seen on personal storytelling:

We’ll be on Zoom again unless the indoor mask mandate changes. Now is a great time for our out-of-town tellers to share more stories with us!

I’ll send out the Zoom link to everyone on the Monday before the show which is October 18.

I hope to see a bunch of you at the show on October 21!

Paul
freshgroundstories@gmail.com

Thanks for another great show :)

Thanks to everyone who came out last Thursday! I had a great time. I hope you did too.

We had a good mix of regulars and first-timers. We even had a second-timer I introduced as a first-timer. Sorry, Gretchen! 

We couldn’t have started off more beautifully with a story from Dave (who happens to run the monthly story workshop). Dave’s pacing and imagery were perfect. We were all right there with him as he took us on a journey through one year of a marriage that has now lasted decades.

Behnaz told us about surviving the first few dates post-marriage and I am happy to report that there is life after breakup. I might have to connect her with Renata, one of our tellers who wrote a book a few years ago called, “Around Seattle in 80 Dates.” Renata, if you’re reading this, send Behnaz an autographed copy of your book!

Beverly, our friend from upstate New York, told the first positive clown story I’ve ever heard. Honestly, has anyone ever heard a clown story that didn’t turn out to be something Stephen King would write? Well, Beverly met the world’s kindest circus clown one day and he made a whole bunch of kids feel very special. 

Gretchen told a story that had me spooked from the beginning. It had all the elements of another haunting story but in the end, turned out to be the exact opposite. Am I just in a haunted mood this week? Why is everything scaring me? I think someone could tell me a story about ice cream and puppies and somehow my heart rate would go up. Thanks for the soft landing at the end of your story, Gretchen. And I promise the next time I see you I’m buying you two Scones of Courage since I’ve introduced you twice as a first-timer 🙂

Simar was up next with a story I immediately identified with. He flew across continents for love. That’s exactly the kind of thing I would do! Of course, airlines and evil travel agents were working against him. But isn’t that how it should be? It wouldn’t be much of a story if Simar hadn’t had to summon his inner Liam Neeson to get to where he needed to go.

Danielle came right after Simar and it was good that she did because she was calling in from the wrong side of Canada. By wrong, I mean the east side and it was late over there. She told an amazing story of having a stroke at the shouldn’t-be-having-a-stroke age of 42. All I could think as I listened to her story was that no matter where this story goes I know it turns out ok. If you only listened to the first few minutes of her story you would swear she wouldn’t be healthy enough to tell it just months later. Yay for luck, faith, and the Canadian healthcare system!

Laurie was next with a story about a neighborhood bully and how she overcame tricycle shaming. Yes, trike shaming is a thing when you’re six years old and you aren’t riding a two-wheeler yet. There’s something about a person you don’t like daring you to do something that will get even the calmest person to do things they never would. I like to think I’ve gotten over that but I don’t think I have.

Emily told a story about the state of her eggs. Not the ones in her fridge. The ones in her ovaries. Apparently, most of the women in Emily’s family have babies in their 40s. Emily is in her 30s and is worried that her eggs won’t make it that long. Or worse, what if she dies before she gets a chance to use them? Should she freeze them and put them in her will? Should she name them so her name can live on? These are just some of the things we learned about Emily that night.  This is one of the many things I love about storytelling. We get glimpses into people’s minds we would never get otherwise. I really can’t imagine any other circumstance where Emily would lean over to me and say, “Did I ever tell you about the time I freaked out over my eggs?” 

Our final teller was Cindy, a first-timer, whose story I heard at a friend’s house during a storytelling night she held this summer in her back yard. It was a wonderful story about two people meeting by chance and discovering a connection they have through their experiences of adoption. It was one of those stories I wish all of you had been there for. I hope Cindy comes back and tells more stories with us.

Thanks again to all the tellers and everyone who came out to support them. I know it’s hard to go back to Zoom when we just started going back on stage. But we will outlast this pandemic! Delta, Gamma, Kappa, Harpo and Zeppo variants will come and go but we will be here when it’s time to back to Starbucks 🙂

Our next show is October 21. The theme is “The Kindness of Strangers.” I’ll get the official invite out as soon as I can.

Take care, everyone. See you next month.

Paul

freshgroundstories@gmail.com

Zoom link for Thursday’s show

Hi Everyone,

I’m looking forward to seeing you on Zoom this Thursday! If you want to tell a story, send me an email between now and Thursday. Or you can log in early the night of the show and let me know then.

Below is the Zoom info. See you soon 🙂

Paul

Topic: FGS: Down but not out – Stories of getting up off the canvas

Time: Sep 16, 2021 07:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84569517983?pwd=RFJ2M2h1anYyRWZtUkRCc2xVN2lLQT09

Meeting ID: 845 6951 7983

Passcode: 694467

One tap mobile

+12532158782,,84569517983#,,,,*694467# US (Tacoma)

+16699006833,,84569517983#,,,,*694467# US (San Jose)

Dial by your location

        +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)

        +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)

        +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)

        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)

        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

        +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)

Meeting ID: 845 6951 7983

Passcode: 694467

Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kcvZ6tbgx9

Quick update on The Moth

Hi Everyone,

I just got some new info on The Moth. They will be coming back live in Seattle, possibly as soon as next month! Whenever it is, I’m really looking forward to it. They’re the reason FGS and many other shows exist. 

Check their website to see when they re-add Seattle and announce what’s next. https://themoth.org/.

In the meantime, here’s one of my favorite tellers at a Moth show 🙂

See you next week!

Paul