Monday, April 25, 2011

Storytelling - another view

If you didn't catch this a few weeks ago at the Maumee Valley Romance Writers blogsite, here it is again! Enjoy!

While most of us might think of stories in written form, probably the oldest form of storytelling is through song.

I admire anyone who can play a musical instrument and carry a tune, because I can do neither!

Think about it - the verses of a song are a story in themselves:
So just where to start the story
Titanic comes to mind
Imagine my excitement
As they cast away the lines

Are you thinking, Leonard DiCaprio and Kate Winslet? (Uh, that was too easy, huh?) Probably, but no one involved with that movie wrote that stanza, which in itself is the beginning of a wonderful story.

A dear friend of mine is an amazing musician and storyteller. Kerry Clark has been strumming a guitar and writing stories for a long time. (And, he's not that old!) It is he who wrote that verse, the beginning of his song ROW from the CD On the Road to Human Being. I first met Kerry some twenty years ago.

It was about 6AM, in one of the concourses of Franklin Park Mall in Toledo, OH. Kerry had graciously agreed to get up at the crack of nothing and perform on the radio morning show, of which I was a part. It was Christmas-time and my morning show partners and I were doing a special broadcast from the mall.

I was standing with a few other women. We had to admire his butter-blond hair which was styled in the style of the early 90s – business in the front, party in the back! I must say, Kerry’s was the most appealing and un-mullet-like rock-star mullet I have ever seen!

And, WOW – that boy could sing! To top it off – he was---and still is! --- a sweetheart!

I have found over the years, the stories Kerry tells in his songs aren’t just his stories. Sure, they may have originated in his mind, were scribbled on a napkin with his pen, arranged, sung and recorded in his studio. But, once shared, they transcend who he is.

For instance, ROW – ya gotta keep pluggin’ away even if the ship is sinking! We’ve all been in ‘that boat’ once or twice in our lives. I often pull up that song on my Ipod when I’m in the car on my way to work, because regardless if I’m in love with my job or not (and many days it’s not!) I still have to yank on that oar and get movin’! Not just to work – but to life.

Which, to me, makes writing and the process of being published that much more exciting. Not that ‘getting a book published’ was on my Bucket List. Writing a story was something I always knew I was capable of doing, getting it published was the pat on the head – from a completely unbiased source – that I needed, that all of us need on occasion to make our lives ‘extra’ worthwhile.

So, dear writing friends, keep putting pen to paper, fingers to keyboards, keep telling stories, because not only may those tales mean something to you, they may mean even more to someone else.

And, to my dear friend, Kerry, if I haven’t done it in the past, please consider your head patted, smooched and yourself hugged immensely. Your musical stories, love and friendship from you and your family mean more to me than you’ll ever know.

Row to the rhythm of your heart - row till you find out who you are
Row like you’ll never face defeat - row till you fill your life complete

Amen, my brother, amen!


Wendy Burke blogs regularly for the Maumee Valley Romance Writers of America and A Daily Dose of Decadence. She is dangerously close to getting RESPITE, a post-WWII romance published by Decadent Publishing. She can be found on Facebook – Wendy Burke Author, at her blog site, Whatever Wendy! and lurking around the Internet. When not playing with the people in her head, Wendy has a fine life with her handsome chef husband and two furry feline kids. She also has a full-time job behind the scenes in television which keeps her from writing fulltime in the somewhat pot-hole-free suburbs of Toledo, Ohio.

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