Introduction: Relevance: One of the Keys to Successful Social Interactions
Are you giving your time and energy to things that are relevant to you? What importance do you place on relevance in your decisions to interact with others?
A few weeks ago I signed up for a digital storytelling event because I want to learn how to tell better stories. Over the summer, I read and reviewed The Power of Visual Storytelling by Ekaterina Walter and Jessica Gioglio, which was a very good book, but when you are improving your craft you look for a variety of sources for information. And storytelling and visual storytelling complement each other because the most powerful content is a combination of text and image. I signed up for the digital storytelling event because I wanted more tips on storytelling.
Last week I attended the event, and there was some good content presented, but the organizers got the idea of including small group discussions. For the most part, I detest small group discussions, I try to avoid them like the plague, and I have become very good at doing the disappearing act.
However, last week, I was unable to move fast enough because of the layout of the room. I am not a hermit. I am the first to admit that my social skills are not as developed as an extrovert, but I can certainly hold my own in a conversation. When I went to the event, all I wanted was information that I could use right away. I did not have a specific example of a specific need to share with participants, all I wanted was to learn how to tell better stories.
I started to think about why I had such an adverse reaction to the small group discussion, and I realized that what they were asking me to do was not relevant to my situation. And looking back, I realized that all the small group discussions that I enjoyed were relevant to me, and that’s why I participated instead of doing the disappearing act. There is a concept called the Moment of Relevance, which I talked briefly about a few months ago. And from what I read, the moment of relevance is the start of the buying process when you have started to gather information. I also think that it is the moment when something becomes relevant to you, and when something you have becomes relevant to another person.
Tips from Digital Storytelling Meet-up
Let’s circle back to the digital storytelling meet-up. Kate Hodgson who presented at the Digital Storytelling Meet-up defines digital storytelling as a combination of different media elements to tell a story. She raised some interesting questions and gave participants the eight steps to digital storytelling.
- What information can you convey and with what medium?
- Which media will you integrate?
- What’s not germane to the story?
- What parts of the story will readers engage with?
These questions are worth thinking about to gain clarity around the story that you want to tell.
8 Steps to Digital Storytelling
- Have an idea
- Piece together
- Gather media elements
- Assess results
Do you agree with the steps? Intuitively, it feels like the storyboard/plan should come before writing, but I am reminded that when I created the presentation for the start of the Virtual Literary World Tour, I created my storyboard based on what I had written, so I guess the steps are in the correct sequence. Hodgson emphasized that the media should enhance the story – not detract from it.
The moment of relevance occurred for me during the workshop when Kate Hodgson presented the eight steps to digital storytelling because that is something that I could use – the information was relevant to me. Additionally, she told us that if we wanted to see an excellent example of digital storytelling, we should read Snow Fall: The Avalanche at Tunnel Creek by John Branch. In the article, you will find text, images and embedded videos which make for powerful storytelling.
After thinking about relevance for a while, it occurred to me that it is one of the keys to successful social interactions. What are your thoughts?