Hello storytelling friends! 

My next event is just a week away! 

I hope you'll join me on Saturday, July 30 at 7:00 PM ET at the Connecticut Historical Society in Hartford, CT for the launch of my next book, Someday Is Today: 22 Simple, Actionable Ways to Propel Your Creative Life.

Ticketing is limited. Be sure to get your tickets early.

I'll be telling stories from the book, offering some brand new strategies for making your creative dreams come true, and taking questions from the audience.

I'll also be joined by Elysha Dicks, author of the foreword, and Matt Shepard, author of the afterword, and Jeni Bonaldo, frequently maligned figure in the pages of the book, to talk about their part of the process, too, as well as two very special guests...

Clara and Charlie!

My kids will be joining us to share some thoughts of their own.

We'll also play games, give away prizes, sign books, and more!
RJ Julia Booksellers will be onsite to sell books, and refreshments will be provided courtesy of the Historical Society.

Click here for tickets.

A suggested donation of $10 is requested – all proceeds go directly to the Connecticut Historical Society.If you live locally (or if you're willing to travel), I hope you'll join me for a fun night!


A simple but important lesson:

Be sure to balance the examples (and anecdotes) in your story.

While working with folks in a biotech firm this week, I found myself advising many of them to maintain balance in their stories by presenting their examples and descriptions in equal lengths. 

One storyteller (and scientist), for example, was providing three anecdotes to describe the three clients for whom his firm provides services, but the anecdotes were not balanced. One client was described in great and even amusing detail, while the other two were described with only about a sentence for each.

I asked my storyteller if one client was more important than the others.

"No," he said. In fact, he explained, the other two clients brought more business to their company, but because he didn't work with them directly, he didn't have as much to say about those clients. 

I explained to my storyteller that the amount of time you spend speaking about something signals its  importance to the audience. When you spend time describing one client while barely describing the other two, the other two feel unimportant and are easily forgotten.

"Either say less about the client you know well, or go find out more information about the other two," I said.  

The same holds true for everything in a story.

Want your audience to love your mother in your story? Help them fall in love by allowing them to spend time with her. Signal her importance - in part - by the quantity of words spoken about her. 

Is the pizza delivery guy ultimately a tiny part of your story? Then why did you go on at length about his tattoos and spandex? As unusual and amusing as these details may be, describing them at any length places a sign post over the pizza delivery guy's head, telling the audience to pay attention to this guy. He's critical to the story. 

When he's not, the audience is annoyed. You've also stolen some of their bandwidth by requiring them to remember details that never become relevant. 

Time spent and the number of words committed to describing or explaining something tells the audience what to see as big, shiny, and important and what is worth ignoring.

Calculate carefully. 

Looking to learn more about storytelling through something more than a weekly email lesson?

Try my book on storytelling:

Storyworthy Engage, Teach, Persuade, and Change Your Life Through the Power of Storytelling

Available in paperback, Kindle, and audio, which I narrate myself!

  • July 30: "Someday Is Today" book launch at the CT Historical Society 
  • August 6: Great Hartford Story Slam, Hartford Flavor Company, Hartford, CT
  • September 17: Speak Up at Wolcott School, West Hartford, CT
  • October 8: Red Talks Presented by Confessions of a Mensturator and (with) Speak Up, Connecticut Historical Society
  • October 28-30: Weekend storytelling workshop, Copper Beech Institute, West Hartford, CT
  • November 6: Voices of Hope/Speak Up show, West Hartford, CT
  • December 2-4: Storytelling workshop at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health
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MatthewDicks · 52 Francis Drive · Newington, Connecticut 06111 · USA