Our Narrative Lives/ Telling Our Stories
Muriel Rukeyser wrote ‘The universe is made of stories, not atoms.’ Our lives have as many stories as our bodies do atoms. We only have to discover them and learn to tell them. The workshop is designed for anyone who wants to explore telling their life stories. We’ll look at the sources of stories in our lives, types of stories, and ways to find and develop our important stories. Each student will have the opportunity in class to work on and tell a ten-minute story to the group. Each participant is invited to come to the workshop with a short personal ‘story in mind’ which they would like to tell. Dottie Jean can give students some ideas or ‘prompts’ in case they don’t have one in mind and may be in touch with students via email before the workshop.
However, it is not necessary to get in the front of the group and tell a story if you don’t want to.
Dottie Jean Kirk has been a storyteller all her life, but in 1965 when she graduated college, she didn’t realize storytelling could be a career. Late in her career, Dorothy taught IT and project management at Ernst & Young. She used her stories to teach principles and give examples. Surprised by the number of students who commented that the stories were the best part of the course and what they’d always remember, Dorothy began to believe she had a gift for storytelling.
When she retired in 2011, she decided she wanted to become a performance storyteller. Dottie Jean tells stories of her growing up in the 40’s and 50’s in Salisbury, NC. She has produced and performed in three one-woman shows: Hold Still! I Can’t See Myself; I Came Out in a Darkroom; and Shine, Baby, Shine which she has performed in Asheville, Palm Springs, Atlanta, Salisbury, and Columbia. She also recently appeared at the Tryon Fine Arts Center in a two-woman show entitled Made from Scratch with Connie Regan-Blake. Dorothy’s stories are full of heart and wit and the unique characters from her own life that listeners embrace along with her.
Dorothy is currently working on a book of her stories.