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How Do You Tell Good Stories?
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TIOT12 Offline
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How Do You Tell Good Stories?
I am trying to get better at my story telling and was curious what things y'all do to tell great stories? For example, what tips would you give and what books, videos or comedy routines do you follow or mirror?

This is for various contexts not just talking to women, but could also be your friends and family or even your employees or just people in general. Right now, I am usually able to build some interest and get the occassional laugh and get to the point where I get buy in and they are excited to hear the big finish but I have trouble finishing the story. Either I don't really know what a good finish should sound like or or am unable to deliver the big laugh I would like to get. So aside from just general advice, how do y'all effectively finish your stories. What works for you and what mistakes do you now avoid? Also, how do you handle this situation where you are telling a story in a foreign language but you make a few grammar errors or forget a word and are corrected? How do you keep the momentum?

Finally, how do you handle questions when asked about your story? How do you address them while effectively keeping the momentum? Obviously, you like the interest but you don't want it to derail the story either.

And a final question with regard to flow and your storytelling. When you tell your great story and you get that high energy and response from others, are you then looking to end things right there or how do you handle the flow? For example, do you make an effort to go back to it in future conversations like comedians will do in their act with earlier successful jokes they told earlier in their act? in other words, do you use it to build up energy again in future conversations, meetings, dates, etc. or what is your process?
08-07-2017 02:18 PM
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crdr Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
Live a life worth telling a story about.
Make the boring, exciting.
Make the exciting, mysterious.
Get an IMDB credit. Have a strong Instagram page.
(This post was last modified: 08-07-2017 02:23 PM by crdr.)
08-07-2017 02:20 PM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
Best to offer an example of a well told story and one of my favorites...the George Brett Story



“Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate.”
(This post was last modified: 08-07-2017 02:26 PM by heavy.)
08-07-2017 02:23 PM
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TIOT12 Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-07-2017 02:23 PM)heavy Wrote:  Best to offer an example of a well told story and one of my favorites...the George Brett Story



Thank you. Much appreciated as I think this example is particularly helpful.
It is interesting here because in this story he didn't seem to have a particularly strong finish either. He basically just says that is what happened and true story. However, I feel he had a great start to the story and got buy in fast with the weird question of have you ever sh!t your pants? Obviously, they want to see where this is going and the self deprecating humor is well received.

I also like that he tells the story with more of the present tense rather than in the past as he keeps the audience on the hook about what will happen.
(This post was last modified: 08-07-2017 03:05 PM by TIOT12.)
08-07-2017 02:32 PM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
Man, good story telling is an art. I suck at it. I have my moments here and there and I have a handful of go-to's that kind of tell themselves simply because the content of the story is great so I don't need to worry about gripping the listener so much, but that's a trait I really wish I could adopt. Being able to captivate people with a story that isn't even particularly too interesting but they way you tell it is great and keep people intrigued.

I would say watch a lot of stand up comedy as some of those guys literally make a living off of telling stories and entertaining people while doing it.
08-07-2017 03:32 PM
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Ringo Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
There's a bunch of threads on this:

Lessons in storytelling
Storytelling Resources & How do you tell a story
How did you become "more interesting"?
Turning Conversation into a interesting one
On Being Interesting

(05-24-2017 09:09 AM)Ringo Wrote:  Off the cuff:
- Read "How to win friends and influence people" by Dale Carnegie. This book is one of the best resources for any human. Lots of information on how to hold someone's attention, make them feel comfortable, build rapport.

- If you're doing day game, it's okay to ramble on longer - you just have to steer the conversation to an area you are comfortable with. If you're doing night game, you shouldn't have to talk too much. Be witty and communicate sexuality with your body language and eyes, tease them like they're your little sister (shoutout Kaotic) and escalate. Talking their ear off can be done if you're rejected for the kiss early on, but the talking is just building more comfort to try again - so keep the goal in mind.

- If you have hobbies or cool life experiences, those are good resources to expand upon. But a cool story is only cool if you tell it well. Just look at how girls tell stories - they're horrible. They pause at the wrong time, give you useless details, spoil the ending before the right time, emphasize dumb moments.

Take a few key stories or moments you've had and use them over and over with girls, honing the way you tell the story and paying attention to how the audience reacts every time.

- When you're talking, never go for logic, always go for feeling. That's my #1 way to build emotional rapport.
(04-26-2017 04:12 PM)Ringo Wrote:  Instead of asking a question the way people usually ask ("What's your favorite food?"), I'll start by dropping something about me ("I was walking here and for some reason I started to think about food. My grandma used to make the best lasagna, my family and I would eat it every Sunday at her place."), and then I'll pose an emotion eliciting question ("What did you enjoy eating the most when you were a kid?").

Instead of asking "So, what do you do for a living?", I'd ask "So, what did you want to be when you grew up?". And start exploring scenarios, tease them, and so on.

It's a subtle difference in intent and wording but it causes a very different response because you're always touching on emotion rather than just logic or straightforward thinking.

When you talk to people coming from emotion rather than linear/logic thinking, they tend to share intimate information with you which you can use to cold read them or tease them.

(04-26-2017 04:12 PM)Ringo Wrote:  Storytelling can be both creating a narrative (as used in advertising and filmmaking) or actually telling a story, like Brewdog's scenario a few posts above.

Gaming girls is often like the former. You're creating a narrative in which it makes sense for them to go home with you. Whether you do it consciously or not, you actions, style, wording, phrasing, delivery, ambiance - they all build up a story in their heads.

Either way, actually telling a story is a great way to draw attention, elicit responses and control the room. In dates or with new girls, I'll tell 30 minute long stories and go on wild tangents in which I ask them questions and allow them to talk - but there's always some cliffhanger which make THEM ask me to continue the story, even though we sometimes spend a long time on a related topic.

At parties I'll often tell 10, 15 minute stories and encourage the "crowd" listening in to participate.

For example, if I'm at a party telling a story and have my wingman with me, I'll try to recreate the scene using the people around. If I'm describing a moment when I met a young girl while walking around a bus station, I'll get my wingman and a chick to re-enact the story. It's hilarious and builds rapport all around.

There's two great stories on this post I made a while back. Comedy Central's This is Not Happening is a great resource to see good storytelling.

As for the OP's question...

To be interesting can mostly be equated to being entertaining.

That is - it doesn't have to be inherently good, and it doesn't have to be clow-like or perfomance-like. But it has to eicit a reaction of "I can't get enough of this" or "How far does this go" in the other person.

One way to do that is to have great stories and experiences, having travelled the world, lived abroad, and so on - like others mentioned. Those are your personal experiences that, when shared, work as bait for people to ask more questions and learn from you.

Although I have quite a few of those (much more so than most of my peers), what I really enjoy is doing things another way - mindfucking them.

This approach is very simple but not necessarily easy. It's about creating fun scenarios, posing questions that make people think emotionally and use their imaginations, maybe see things in a way they never had before.

Creating scenarios for people to act out is one, like described above.

Another one is, instead of asking a question the way people usually ask ("What's your favorite food?"), I'll start by dropping something about me ("I was walking here and for some reason I started to think about food. My grandma used to make the best lasagna, my family and I would eat it every Sunday at her place."), and then I'll pose an emotion eliciting question ("What did you enjoy eating the most when you were a kid?").

Instead of asking "So, what do you do for a living?", I'd ask "So, what did you want to be when you grew up?". And start exploring scenarios, tease them, and so on.

It's a subtle difference in intent and wording but it causes a very different response because you're always touching on emotion rather than just logic or straightforward thinking.

Also - this post has some examples of what I would consider good stories.

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(This post was last modified: 08-07-2017 03:41 PM by Ringo.)
08-07-2017 03:39 PM
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komatiite Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-07-2017 02:23 PM)heavy Wrote:  Best to offer an example of a well told story and one of my favorites...the George Brett Story



Heavy you would enjoy this podcast
http://www.barstoolsports.com/chicago/pa...rge-brett/
Go to 23:30 or so for George Brett. Guy is fucking hilarious! Great storyteller
08-07-2017 06:25 PM
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TooFineAPoint Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
To OP:
1. Setup
2. Tension
3. Payoff

Think of a story as several little cycles of 1-3 above, but on a macro level it is also one big cycle (with the micro cycles ramping up in intensity).

For shorter stories or jokes, you just need one cycle.
08-08-2017 08:47 AM
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Beijong Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-07-2017 02:20 PM)crdr Wrote:  Live a life worth telling a story about.
Make the boring, exciting.
Make the exciting, mysterious.
Get an IMDB credit. Have a strong Instagram page.

I dunno man. I know a guy who is a real try hard with his stories. He tries to make the boring, exciting. And it's like, wow, thats really boring but you're acting like I'm supposed to be impressed.

He's an ugly guy and so really tries to compensate for it but pretending everything he says is exciting. He's even adopted a Radio Voice, where he talks like the guys from any high energy morning radio program.

It's way over the top.

I'd say the best advice is your first line "Live a life worth telling a story about"

You can't go wrong with that
08-08-2017 09:11 AM
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crdr Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-08-2017 09:11 AM)Beijong Wrote:  
(08-07-2017 02:20 PM)crdr Wrote:  Live a life worth telling a story about.
Make the boring, exciting.
Make the exciting, mysterious.
Get an IMDB credit. Have a strong Instagram page.

I dunno man. I know a guy who is a real try hard with his stories. He tries to make the boring, exciting. And it's like, wow, thats really boring but you're acting like I'm supposed to be impressed.

He's an ugly guy and so really tries to compensate for it but pretending everything he says is exciting. He's even adopted a Radio Voice, where he talks like the guys from any high energy morning radio program.

It's way over the top.

I'd say the best advice is your first line "Live a life worth telling a story about"

You can't go wrong with that

1. You cannot tell a story if you try too hard.
2. Those were sequential steps each step evolves into the next step.

When you live a life worth telling. You will be able to make the boring exciting and conceal the exciting to make it mysterious.
Because stories will just become apart of you. If I can make working as a Grocery Clerk exciting. You can make whatever you do exciting.
Note, it's very tough to make the exciting, more exciting. Working Wall Street for instance. The more you talk, the more you sound like you're bragging.

3. Stories must create and RELATE status or they aren't really stories. It must make you look good without bragging or showing off.
4. Seinfeld made the boring, exciting. By relating to their audience's boring daily life.
5. The Sopranos made the exciting, mysterious. See the last episode. I rest my case.

P.S. - Telling stories to women are completely different than telling "Shitting Yourself" stories to the boys.
(This post was last modified: 08-08-2017 09:39 AM by crdr.)
08-08-2017 09:23 AM
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TIOT12 Offline
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Post: #11
RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-08-2017 08:47 AM)TooFineAPoint Wrote:  To OP:
1. Setup
2. Tension
3. Payoff

Think of a story as several little cycles of 1-3 above, but on a macro level it is also one big cycle (with the micro cycles ramping up in intensity).

For shorter stories or jokes, you just need one cycle.

I like this. Any suggestions on how to improve my payoffs? I feel pretty good about the setup and tension but often feel my stories don't have a good close.
08-08-2017 10:53 AM
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TIOT12 Offline
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-08-2017 09:23 AM)crdr Wrote:  P.S. - Telling stories to women are completely different than telling "Shitting Yourself" stories to the boys.

Let's hear more on this point. What kinds of stories do you think would fit into each category and what about when you are talking before a mixed audience at a bar or a party?

On an individual basis, I know in Roosh's book he talks about wanting to tell women stories that put you in better light by showing your value as being more adventurous, interesting, etc. Of course, I have also seen others talk about how they like to ask questions that will invariably get a woman talking about things from her childhood: her favorite food, toy, places she's been, etc. Obviously, as another poster wrote one way to do this is to tell your own story about the same which causes her to think about how her own experiences relate and she will want to naturally share.
08-08-2017 11:07 AM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-08-2017 10:53 AM)TIOT12 Wrote:  
(08-08-2017 08:47 AM)TooFineAPoint Wrote:  To OP:
1. Setup
2. Tension
3. Payoff

Think of a story as several little cycles of 1-3 above, but on a macro level it is also one big cycle (with the micro cycles ramping up in intensity).

For shorter stories or jokes, you just need one cycle.

I like this. Any suggestions on how to improve my payoffs? I feel pretty good about the setup and tension but often feel my stories don't have a good close.

Start with your payoff (I mean build a story by thinking about the payoff). If you don't have a suitable (exciting, interesting) point to the story, it's not worth telling in the first place.

Then when you know where the story is going to end up, you can choose an appropriate setup which positions the story on the opposite emotional end of the payoff.

The tension part is where you can add details and suspense.
08-08-2017 11:32 AM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(08-07-2017 03:39 PM)Ringo Wrote:  There's a bunch of threads on this:

Lessons in storytelling
Storytelling Resources & How do you tell a story
How did you become "more interesting"?
Turning Conversation into a interesting one
On Being Interesting

(05-24-2017 09:09 AM)Ringo Wrote:  Off the cuff:
- Read "How to win friends and influence people" by Dale Carnegie. This book is one of the best resources for any human. Lots of information on how to hold someone's attention, make them feel comfortable, build rapport.

- If you're doing day game, it's okay to ramble on longer - you just have to steer the conversation to an area you are comfortable with. If you're doing night game, you shouldn't have to talk too much. Be witty and communicate sexuality with your body language and eyes, tease them like they're your little sister (shoutout Kaotic) and escalate. Talking their ear off can be done if you're rejected for the kiss early on, but the talking is just building more comfort to try again - so keep the goal in mind.

- If you have hobbies or cool life experiences, those are good resources to expand upon. But a cool story is only cool if you tell it well. Just look at how girls tell stories - they're horrible. They pause at the wrong time, give you useless details, spoil the ending before the right time, emphasize dumb moments.

Take a few key stories or moments you've had and use them over and over with girls, honing the way you tell the story and paying attention to how the audience reacts every time.

- When you're talking, never go for logic, always go for feeling. That's my #1 way to build emotional rapport.
(04-26-2017 04:12 PM)Ringo Wrote:  Instead of asking a question the way people usually ask ("What's your favorite food?"), I'll start by dropping something about me ("I was walking here and for some reason I started to think about food. My grandma used to make the best lasagna, my family and I would eat it every Sunday at her place."), and then I'll pose an emotion eliciting question ("What did you enjoy eating the most when you were a kid?").

Instead of asking "So, what do you do for a living?", I'd ask "So, what did you want to be when you grew up?". And start exploring scenarios, tease them, and so on.

It's a subtle difference in intent and wording but it causes a very different response because you're always touching on emotion rather than just logic or straightforward thinking.

When you talk to people coming from emotion rather than linear/logic thinking, they tend to share intimate information with you which you can use to cold read them or tease them.

(04-26-2017 04:12 PM)Ringo Wrote:  Storytelling can be both creating a narrative (as used in advertising and filmmaking) or actually telling a story, like Brewdog's scenario a few posts above.

Gaming girls is often like the former. You're creating a narrative in which it makes sense for them to go home with you. Whether you do it consciously or not, you actions, style, wording, phrasing, delivery, ambiance - they all build up a story in their heads.

Either way, actually telling a story is a great way to draw attention, elicit responses and control the room. In dates or with new girls, I'll tell 30 minute long stories and go on wild tangents in which I ask them questions and allow them to talk - but there's always some cliffhanger which make THEM ask me to continue the story, even though we sometimes spend a long time on a related topic.

At parties I'll often tell 10, 15 minute stories and encourage the "crowd" listening in to participate.

For example, if I'm at a party telling a story and have my wingman with me, I'll try to recreate the scene using the people around. If I'm describing a moment when I met a young girl while walking around a bus station, I'll get my wingman and a chick to re-enact the story. It's hilarious and builds rapport all around.

There's two great stories on this post I made a while back. Comedy Central's This is Not Happening is a great resource to see good storytelling.

As for the OP's question...

To be interesting can mostly be equated to being entertaining.

That is - it doesn't have to be inherently good, and it doesn't have to be clow-like or perfomance-like. But it has to eicit a reaction of "I can't get enough of this" or "How far does this go" in the other person.

One way to do that is to have great stories and experiences, having travelled the world, lived abroad, and so on - like others mentioned. Those are your personal experiences that, when shared, work as bait for people to ask more questions and learn from you.

Although I have quite a few of those (much more so than most of my peers), what I really enjoy is doing things another way - mindfucking them.

This approach is very simple but not necessarily easy. It's about creating fun scenarios, posing questions that make people think emotionally and use their imaginations, maybe see things in a way they never had before.

Creating scenarios for people to act out is one, like described above.

Another one is, instead of asking a question the way people usually ask ("What's your favorite food?"), I'll start by dropping something about me ("I was walking here and for some reason I started to think about food. My grandma used to make the best lasagna, my family and I would eat it every Sunday at her place."), and then I'll pose an emotion eliciting question ("What did you enjoy eating the most when you were a kid?").

Instead of asking "So, what do you do for a living?", I'd ask "So, what did you want to be when you grew up?". And start exploring scenarios, tease them, and so on.

It's a subtle difference in intent and wording but it causes a very different response because you're always touching on emotion rather than just logic or straightforward thinking.

Also - this post has some examples of what I would consider good stories.

Ringo, a few weeks have passed but I wanted to point out that I have found watching the "This Is Not Happening" videos to be very helpful for my story telling. I now feel like I can tell a pretty good story and am now at the point of tweaking it to get better results. So thanks again for passing on this information.
(This post was last modified: 09-08-2017 06:03 PM by TIOT12.)
09-08-2017 05:47 PM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
"Save The Cat" is a book on script writing that shows how the best storytellers in the world (Hollywood writers) do it.

Also take a look at "The Hero's Journey" by Joseph Campbell - I believe that's where George Lucas got the idea for Star Wars from.

Make a list of funny, scary, weird, interesting, events from your life. Then write out the story. Practice them when you meet new people or talk to girls. Like a stand up comedian, take note of where you hooked your listener and where you lost them. Keep refining your stories.

Practice.

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(This post was last modified: 09-13-2017 06:48 PM by el conquistador.)
09-13-2017 06:48 PM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
I've been in sales and negotiations for quite a few years. I can tell you that to tell a good story, people will be more likely to believe it if you put some passion behind your voice. If you sound bored, even a great story will sound boring. Look people right in the eye and tell the story WITH INTENTION. Avoid overly used adjectives like "good" and say "outstanding" instead, etc. Embellish a little bit without telling an outright lie. When you make things seem a little bit larger than life, then people lean in closer. Use your hands. Draw out the landscape if you're talking about a mountain. Beckon "come here" with a finger if you're talking about someone approaching another person in your story, etc. Let your hands, body language and eyes be in a flow of what story you're telling. Live in that moment by not trying to memorize word-for-word what you're saying, but rather living THE FEELING of the story. Lastly, PAUSE between "chapters" in your story. Don't keep blurting out things non-stop. Pause. Continue. Pause. Continue. Long pause. Continue. Let your works sink in, and people will have greater impression that what you say is worth listening to. When you're all done telling your story, lean back in your chair, spread your arms wide and SAY NOTHING. Let others have an opportunity to enjoy the ending, and ask you questions, as they most likely will.

This technique is very powerful in a social circle, on a date or trying to sell someone anything. Tell great stories, and you'll win followers.

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09-13-2017 07:14 PM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(09-13-2017 06:48 PM)el conquistador Wrote:  Make a list of funny, scary, weird, interesting, events from your life. Then write out the story. Practice them when you meet new people or talk to girls. Like a stand up comedian, take note of where you hooked your listener and where you lost them. Keep refining your stories.

Practice.

I like this and it is what I have been doing. I'm actually looking to join a couple toastmasters groups too (one in Spanish) to help provide more opportunities to practice. I am trying to buildup my list to about a dozen stories or so.

One challenge I am still finding is how to make a good conclusion to stories or anecdotes when one isn't immediately present. My better stories seem to have a twist at the end that works as a natural conclusion. But others simply are one offs to where there isn't the big crescendo. Not sure if it is better to manufacture an ending to try to create this effect or to simply create the story with an opening or closing that is more general like these are the types of things that happen in .... Also, some stories tend to invite the other person to then share a similar account so maybe that is the better natural conclusion to those types of stories. Perhaps this is also a common problem because I noticed on a number of the This Is Not Happening videos there were weak conclusions as well.
09-14-2017 08:51 AM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
Telling captivating stories isn't difficult nor very hard to learn.

Roosh wrote in I think Bang that he learned how to tell stories by retelling jokes from Seinfeld. I'd also recommend reading more fiction. You're looking for words and how to use them to extract an emotional tone or flavor. How something makes you feel can generally be used as a gauge for how others will feel.

Practice on close friends and family.

Be honest and don't try to make lame stories sound exciting. Sometimes telling mundane wtf type stories in a normal tone of voice is all you need to keep the pace of a conversation.

Shalom Alechem!
(This post was last modified: 09-15-2017 07:07 AM by The Beast1.)
09-15-2017 07:05 AM
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RE: How Do You Tell Good Stories?
(09-15-2017 07:05 AM)The Beast1 Wrote:  Telling captivating stories isn't difficult nor very hard to learn.

Roosh wrote in I think Bang that he learned how to tell stories by retelling jokes from Seinfeld. I'd also recommend reading more fiction. You're looking for words and how to use them to extract an emotional tone or flavor. How something makes you feel can generally be used as a gauge for how others will feel.

Practice on close friends and family.

Be honest and don't try to make lame stories sound exciting. Sometimes telling mundane wtf type stories in a normal tone of voice is all you need to keep the pace of a conversation.

Reading is always useful because it stimulates criativity.

However good written storytelling doesn't always translate into good spoken storytelling. It's just a different medium. Hence why, in my opinion, watching stand up comedy and listening to podcasts/interviews is more useful.

Datasheets São Paulo, BR | Diamantina, BR | Osijek, HR | My most reliable opener
09-15-2017 08:52 AM
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