As if my scattered mind doesn’t have enough to contemplate, I signed up for another excellent online course offered by Future Learn. Digital Storytelling takes students through the why, what and how of using video or other visual media to tell stories. While the focus is on short films, the lessons on what is story, the elements of compelling story and storyboarding apply equally to writing fiction, non-fiction and poetry.

Why am I interested? I want to start telling stories, digitally. It’s something new, but not so new. Elementary schools, arts faculties, enlightened correctional institutions and regular folk are using digital storytelling as a medium of expression with visual and audio elements. I can’t wait to set up a YouTube Channel as part of my author platform building, but there’s so much ‘noise’ out there and I want to do something out of the ordinary so I can distinguish myself from the herd.

Simply reading words on a page or listening to a narrator represents ‘flat’ consumption of a book. Not all of the senses are engaged. Remember ‘scratch & sniff’ cards, where you’d get a whiff of hamburger or roses when you scraped your nail across a section of coated paper? That’s my analogy for digital storytelling – but without the smell part. It’s exciting and, unlike some of my other addictions (sewing, knitting, beading, gardening), would keep me in the writing/creative sphere.

It’s another way to stretch engagement. Here’s something really interesting. It’s a project called Resonate, by Nancy Duarte. Check it out.


What a brilliant presentation method! And it’s so far removed from the PowerPoint decks we had to suffer through at business meetings, as to be unrecognizable.

What caught my eye was the blurb on page 175 about creating S.T.A.R. moments.

star moments

Even better, Nancy Duarte talks about audience, heroes, structure, murdering your darlings, telling compelling, well-structured stories and capturing readers’ imaginations, which is exactly our objective as writers.

When you click on the link, you’ll be taken to a web site with her interactive/multimedia presentation. When you arrive at a slide with an orange block surrounding an arrow, clicking on the arrow will open up a narrated Vimeo video.

Experience digital storytelling and a fresh approach to storytelling. Think about what you could do with this. Let your imagination run free.