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How To Write Stories About Your Business

You’ve heard it once. You’ve heard it a million times. You’ve got to tell stories. 
 
And now Forbes is forecasting that “great storytelling” and “less reliance on data” will shape the marketing futures for small businesses this year. 
 
So. You’re on board. You've accepted that storytelling can help you grow your business and reach your ideal customers. And you're ready to dive in. But there’s just one problem: when it comes to your business, where do great stories come from? And which stories should you tell? 

Stories are All Around Us  

The truth is stories are everywhere. In fact, this is the very worldview professional storytellers hold and use to find stories worth sharing. 
 
Margot Leitman, the author of Long Story Short and Moth Grand Slam Champion, believes the problem with finding good stories originates from our actions and our awareness. Leitman argues that as we age we...
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The Problem with Stories

Why can’t Harry Potter just go to Hogwarts when he receives his acceptance letter?

Why can’t Dorothy get back home to Kansas?

Why don’t the townsfolk believe the little boy who cried wolf?  

Even after two degrees in English literature, it wasn’t until my oldest son started 1st grade that I really understood stories. One morning when I visited his classroom, his teacher very simply laid out for her students the following little gem: 
 
Every story has a problem. 
 
Now this statement might seem obvious to you but when you begin to examine the story’s problem, or more specifically the main character's problem, that’s when the story gets interesting. 
 
In a good book or movie, everything from character growth to plot development to theme revolves around the problem. 
 
For instance, Harry can’t go to Hogwarts because his aunt and uncle forbid him. What does he do in response? That’s...
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How writing confidence translates to college acceptance

When Talya began applying for schools in the fall of 2018, she was far ahead of most of her peers. And that’s not only because she chose to apply early.

Talya is a parent’s dream. She operates on plans, checklists, note-taking, spreadsheets, and networking. If it’s important, Talya has seen it coming and she’s working on a strategy. These tactics are not new acquisitions either.

Talya, who grew up competing in sports, elected to attend a rigorous private high school, has volunteered hundreds of hours to Youthline, a crisis helpline with teen to teen support, and even sat on the Planned Parenthood Council before she was 18, is well practiced in getting her ship in order and aiming her sails at the high seas.

As she toured schools, tried on majors, and devoted herself to passionate causes, there was just one little thing (okay, it’s kind of a big thing) that kept Talya awake at night, worried that she might not be accepted into her dream school. That...

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The Future is Female

When Gabi started as a camper at App Camp for Girls, or what the organizers call a developer, she was only 13. For the next few years she was a volunteer, but at 16-years-old the staff shook their heads and wondered what on earth they would do with her.

Gabi was too old to remain an intern yet too young to become a project team manager. Some organizations would have just told Gabi to come back when she was older. But the leadership at App Camp for Girls is far too brilliant to let something like established norms interfere with hanging onto young talent. So, they created a new position, the “Lead Developer Intern,” or what they affectionately call “The Gabi Job.” 

Gabi’s experience solving a particularly difficult coding riddle at the camp is the subject of her common application essay. As an award-winning playwright and National Merit Scholar, she has the sort of brain that craves learning, challenges, and the thrill of overcoming obstacles.

And...

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How to compete and win a $275,000 college scholarship to a top school

Meet Tori. She’s not your average high school senior. She’s not your average young woman. Let’s face it. Tori isn’t average in anything. 

Tori isn’t just a top student at her public high school—she’s also an award-winning rock climber. As the 8-time regional champion and ranking nationally in the top 10 three times, competing is a regular part of Tori's life.

She's not only sought out higher ground in sports but also high stakes issues, where she’s become a local leader. For the last two years, Tori has led her high school’s SAFER program, to educate her peers about sexual consent and sexual violence.

She’s collaborated with partnerships with Oregon Student Voice and the Oregon Attorney General to bring sexual assault response training to youths. When it comes to social justice, equity, advocacy—or probably anything—Tori is the fighter you want on your side.

Part of Tori's scrappy charm comes from the...

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