Are your stories stale or do you need to incorporate new stories into your presentations?
Every amazing presentation needs a great
story, but creating a story that’s memorable,
exciting, and relatable to the topic at hand is
a big challenge. In Paid to Speak, Max Dixon
offers a simple four-step format to help you
create an amazing “hero’s journey” story:
1. THE CALL. Start your story with a person
who sets out to accomplish something for
4 STEPS TO CREATE BETTER STORIES
Do you have hundreds of unopened emails crowding your inbox? While you may think it works for you, when
checking your email consumes most of your
time and brain space, it’s stressful. Here are
four tips to tame your inbox:
1. UNSUBSCRIBE. If you get tons of promotional emails, odds are your information
is working its way through the internet. Use
unroll.me to easily mass-unsubscribe from
promotional emails. The site allows you to
choose which sites don’t make the cut, so
you can continue receiving o;ers from your
2. DELETE THE PROMOS FIRST. If you
do subscribe to a few promotional emails,
don’t let them pile up. They want your
attention, so they put their o;er in the sub-
ject line. Do a quick skim to decide which
deals are worth your attention that day and
send the rest straight to the trash.
3. REPLY TO EMAILS AS SOON AS YOU
CAN. This may seem like a no-brainer, but
it’s so easy to push o; emails throughout the
day that don’t need your immediate attention. Odds are, you’ll be happier if you don’t
have a stockpile of needy emails at the end
of the day.
4. CREATE A FILING SYSTEM. Use your
mail software’s folder or labeling options
to store emails you need to keep. Sort by
project, client, topic, or whatever works for
you. They’ll be accessible, but not clogging
up your inbox.
YOU’VE GOT …
Blame AOL for perpetuating the
phrase “You’ve got mail.” The
construction “YOU’VE GOT”
is clunky and wrong. Use the
simpler: You have mail.
Instead of: We’ve got to see this.
Use: We have to see this.
Instead of: I’ve got to
make a call.
Use: I have to make a call.
While the phrases sound similar,
it’s not should of, would of, could
of. In this case, the contractions
stand in for HAVE: should’ve,
I should’ve packed an umbrella.
We would’ve stayed dry if we
had planned ahead.
I guess I could’ve borrowed
one from the front desk.
2. OBSTACLES. Share how this person
encounters an obstacle, threat, or conflict.
3. RESOLUTION. Talk about how a way
out was discovered by the person or from
4. NEW WISDOM. Tell how the ending
imparts new wisdom.
For more practical ways to create
memorable stories, check out Chapter 3
of Paid to Speak.