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Wonderful! Everyone has the opportunity to share stories - some of us do a great job and others need a boost. The Art of Storytelling breaks down the steps necessary to tell a wonderful story! Mr. Walsh writes in a soft conversational tone that offers the reader the opportunity to learn without the fear of failure. A must read for everyone wanting to tell their story a little better. This would be a great gift for seminarians and anyone in the communications field. Enjoy! NetGalley and Moody Publishers provided an advanced review copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Review by Lynda Smock, October 10, 2013, Goodreads
What I liked about this book was that story-telling wasn't restricted to just kids, it's presented as a way of sharing that can work for everyone. And while the first application for story-telling that came to mind was for sermons, this book also shows that it's possible to use it in a classroom setting.
If you're looking for a book that will help you in Children's ministry or in any ministry that requires public speaking, you should definitely pick up this book. 4 out of 5 stars.
Review by Eustacia Tan, October 20, 2013, Net Galley
People of all ages enjoy listening to a good story told. Stories are often a more effective means of conveying instruction and truths than didactic, analytical teaching. John D. Walsh, in The Art of Storytelling: Easy Steps to Presenting an Unforgettable Story gives readers, whether new to the art or are already experienced public speakers, tips and tools for improving their craft. Through numerous exercises and activities, the reader is encouraged to participate and practice honing skills that are introduced in each chapter.
John wants stories to become the point of telling stories. Too often in modern public speaking, stories are relegated to "spice up" sermons and presentations and to illustrate some points in them. The modern mindset has been conditioned to accept that stories are for children (and must have a stated application or moral), that "real teaching" happens in didactic lectures. John discusses how people relate to and recall stories far better than didactic teaching - lectures and sermons with "the big idea" or "here are three points."
The book itself is divided into three sections. Part one, the longest section, teaches the aspiring storyteller fourteen steps in preparing to tell a story. John further subdivides these steps into ten essential steps toward telling a good story, and four optional steps that may be taken to raise a good story to a great one.
This book is written by a Christian with the Christian audience in mind, but it can be valuable to anyone who speaks to an audience, whether to one or a million or anywhere in-between. Particularly, sections one and two are applicable to all public storytelling engagements. Even the third section can be valuable as case studies on how to turn written materials that may not initially strike the reader as a story, into an engaging story that can be told to an audience.
I highly recommend this book for all public speakers, but especially for pastors and church teaching staff. Rating 5 of 5 stars.
Review Mark Kubo, Net Galley, October 21, 2013
In The Art of Storytelling, John Walsh clearly demonstrates that storytelling is one of the most effective ways to connect with people's hearts and minds.
Walsh's valuable insights from a lifetime of storytelling are applicable to parents (who want to capture their children's imaginations), business men (who want to impart their vision to clients and associates), teachers (who want students to think on their own), public speakers (who want to improve their skills), actors and writers (who want their characters to speak volumes - even without words), and anyone who wants to improve their personal conversation skills.
Walsh packs much from his storytelling workshops into this clear, easy to read guide.
The author makes elusive communication concepts simple to understand, and he gives helpful advice for practical questions like - What do you with your hands while you speak? and How do I handle nervousness?
Towards the end of the book, Walsh talks about BibleTelling - using storytelling techniques to communicate Bible stories. In this section, Walsh explains why Bible teachers should not just give the point of the story away (which teachers are frequently tempted to do). Instead, Walsh shows teachers how to harness the power of storytelling to draw people in and get them to think on their own. As a result, life-changing connections are made!
Review by David Rainey, Net Galley, October 22, 2013