Story Well is a month long, online exploration of the stories that shape(d) us. Through daily emails we will write from memory and create fiction, we will do impromptu art making (nothing to buy ahead of time!), we will share books and poems and ideas to nourish and aggravate our souls, we will bear witness to each other and we will reconnect with the our radical, story sharing selves.
Throughout February we will consider:
The stories we were told - think of it as your own book of myths + legends
The stories we create from our experiences - an on going atlas of your life's adventures
The stories we are writing (and consuming) right now.
By dipping into the story well, we can:
- Become better listeners to those around us, we can stop fighting with facts, positions and maneuvering and get back to the radical power of story and human connection.
- Gain agency to our own story. This is ongoing work. It never ends. When we stop being present to the work of cultivating our own tales, outside cultural influences creep in and co-opt them, Their stories easily web your stories. It is nearly parasitic ----->
- We expand our capability for empathy and greater understanding of the complexity of the human condition.
Since I read the book Writing a Women's Life by Carolyn Heilbrun in college, I knew that we understand the world as much through stories as anything else. She writes:
"What matters is that lives do not serve as models; only stories do. And it is a hard thing to make up stories to live by. We can only retell and live by the stories we have heard or read. We live our lives through texts. The may be read, or chanted, or experienced electronically, or come to us, like the murmuring of our mothers, telling us what conventions demand. Whatever their form or medium, these stories have formed us all; they are what we must use to make new fictions, new narratives."
I hope you will join us in individuating your own narrative.