Things to try to figure out the main point of a story and to make it better:
- Tell the story in 60 seconds to some else and have them tell you the story in 30 seconds. Then repeat the same story in 10 seconds.
- Tell the same story from a different character's perspective in the story.
Doing these two things helps to figure out the details that are important vs details that just add color to the story. It also helps discover humor angle to the story if one is looking for that.
These techniques come in handy when you notice the audience is disengaged or if there is a time limit. Knowing the main parts of the story can help in those situations.
Emphasis on the actual story is as important as the "performance" of the story itself. More importantly, the emotions that go into pronouncing certain words. Emotions are carried through the story but also through the performance of the story.
While it might seem like a "duh" moment, it is very to hard to do when you are juggling everything else that comes from performing in front of an audience.
My final storytelling class performance is next week and I am editing the story to include everything I learned in the past eight weeks.