The SSG ihosted the first Sacramento Valley Storytelling Festival ionr May 20, 2023. This single day event featured five regional tellers showcasing their craft. We offered two popular workshops, had fun with an open mic session for six brave tellers, and were entertained by 3 professional tellers from throughout the state to round out the evening. If you are interested in participating on the planning committee for next year, or as a potential storyteller, please contact Andrew Laufer at Storyteller@SacramentoStorytellersGuild.org or Ed Lewis at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We recommend hosts have six tellers and two poets. At 10 minutes each, that leaves a few minutes for introductions and comments. We like to reserve four spaces for SSG tellers each month. To ensure a diverse set of tellers, we would like to reserve two spaces for tellers from other organizations. For instance, high school tellers, Capital Storytelling, Foothill, Gold Country, Delta Word Weavers, or other storytelling groups. Please also reserve room for two poets. Most hosts rely on Andrew Laufer to find poets, but if you know poets to invite, please let Andrew know so he doesn’t ask anyone.
Ideally, tellers and poets will come in person, but if they prefer to tell via Zoom, that is permissible. To find volunteer tellers in the SSG, work with Joyce Ormond to announce a “Call for Tellers” shortly after the last storytelling program we sponsor. She has the list of SSG members to contact. The “Call for Tellers and Poets” should include the following language:
This is our monthly call for tellers and poets. If you are interested in telling a story at our next program scheduled for (date) between 2:00 PM and 3:30, please send a note to me at (your email address). Each teller and poet will have 10 minutes to share their story. The theme for this month is (theme) but you are not required to stick with the theme if you have another story you’d like to tell.
Send Joyce your language for the Call to Tellers and Poets and she’ll send it out. Her email is email@example.com.
Should you get more than 4 SSG volunteers give priority to tellers that haven’t told recently, then kindly thank those tellers who aren’t selected and encourage them to submit their names for the following month.
To find tellers from outside organizations, work with Joyce, Andrew, Ed Lewis, other Board members or SSG members.
The Host should ask the tellers and poets for background information and speak to them to help them with their introductions and reinforce the need to remain within their time limits. Excess time must be approved the Host.
The Host should start and end on time, 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Those performing via Zoom should sign in by 1:45 to check in and get final instructions. The Zoom link is: https://zoom.us/j/91354356933 Meeting ID: 913 5435 6933. All Zoom tellers or poets should be placed on the program firsts. This allows for ease of transition throughout the program and less disruption.
When beginning the program feel free to start with a light or humorous anecdote to help the audience to relax before starting your introductions.
As the storytellers finish their stories, the Host should give a brief thank you to the presenter perhaps making note of one or two things you heard in the story or poem and then bridge into introducing the next teller or poet.
If you have a break, the Host can take that time to do announcements, if any, and call on others who have announcements. This is the time to tell the audience about any upcoming special events, such as Tellebration, any workshops or other events and special performances by members of the Guild. You may use index cards for introductions and to list information about upcoming events. Always give dates, times and locations.
After the last teller is finished the host should thank everyone for coming and announce the next performance date.
Please send a note to the tellers and poets a day or two after their performance thanking them for their contribution.
Again, thank you. Let's celebrate storytelling!
Etiquette is the customary code of polite behavior in society or among members of a particular group. It is important for Storytellers and Poets performing on behalf of the Sacramento Storytellers Guild (SSG) to maintain a dignified decorum at all times. Our members and visitors need to have clear expectations so that when they attend our programs they are ensured entertainment that is wholesome and appropriate for all ages. One of our goals is to promote storytelling and poetry so we want to do our best to be goodwill ambassadors.
Tellers and Poets who are members of the SSG should meet and greet guests when they enter the Sacramento Poetry Center so they feel welcome and in the company of like mnded friendly people. Please encourage all guests to sign the guest book and refer them to member applications near the guest book.
If there is a large crowd, Tellers and Poets sit near the rear of the room and make sure attendees have good seats. Please stay through the entire program as a means of support to the others.
The history of storytelling is quite ancient. We know this by the drawings depicting hunting or victorious battles found in caves drawn by early man. Before man learned to write, he had to rely on his memory to learn anything. Besides drawing, man most likely used a combination of gestures and expressions to tell their stories. As languages developed and family groups or clans formed, talented storytellers described heroic events or other important happenings of the tribe and began to reach positions of respect and power. Their stories were shared with others in faraway lands by other storytellers lucky enough to find an audience. When people traveled, the stories traveled with them. When they returned home, they brought with them exciting new tales of exotic places and people. Storytelling formed the fabric of their culturesThe stories came in all variety, myths, legends, fairy tales, fables, ghost tales, hero stories and epic adventures. Often stories were told, not only in an oral narrative, but in music, dance and even a complex form of tattooing to help remember stories about genealogy, affiliation and social status.With the advent of writing, stories were recorded, transcribed and shared over wide regions of the world. Stories have been carved, scratched, painted or inked into wood or bamboo, ivory and other bones, pottery, clay tablets, stone, palm-leaf, books, parchment, bark cloth, paper, silk, canvas and other textiles. Today stories are recorded on film or audio and stored electronically in digital form. Even today, many undeveloped communities, regions, and even countries look up to the storytellers as their historians.Contemporary storytelling is used to address education objectives creating new ways for people to inform, express and consume stories. Sometimes telling oral self-revelatory stories creates a therapeutic effect and is used by therapists.Storytellers can be found around the world, in all countries, in cities, agricultural farmland or undeveloped countryside. Oral stories continue to be created by impromptu storytellers and committed to memory and passed from generation to generation, despite the increasing popularity of the written and televised media in much of the world.