What Stories Are Worth Telling?

If you’ve ever been to my website’s homepage, you've seen emblazoned on it a manifesto of sorts: Telling Stories Worth Telling. However, some of you may have been pondered the exact question I'm facing right now: exactly what stories are worth telling?  After all, saying that I’m going to tell stories worth telling seems to imply that some stories aren’t worth telling, that some tales should remain untold. So how do I determine which stories to tell? Or, to make the question more relevant in a world where discussion of who gets cast in leading roles or included in blockbuster films has become increasingly important: who has stories worth telling?

This question actually has a simple answer: everyone. Everyone has a story inside of them that’s worth sharing with the world.  Now, this doesn’t mean that every moment in our lives could become a novel or film. I woke up this morning, after all, and I wouldn't make a short story of my waking moments. Our lives are made up of millions upon millions of episodes, and the truth is that the majority of them don’t make up stories worth sharing with the world (before you get too upset about this, imagine how downright exhausting and stressful it would be if every experience we had was worthy of an epic poem… I don’t think anyone would be able to handle that kind ofa life).

This does, however, mean two things. First, everyone has a tale that’s worth telling. No matter our experiences, no matter our background, no matter our personality, we all have a story worth sharing with the world.  Whether this story is a huge one like winning freedom for a nation or inventing vaccines, or a small one such as a heartwarming family fishing trip or a raucous and hilarious night of college fun, we all have a story that deserves telling.  Second, a beautiful and powerful story can come from any moment in our lives. My waking up this morning wasn’t the kind of material that should appear in any short story or epic poem, but under different circumstances (for example if I had woken up, caught a glimpse of dust motes dancing in a shaft of sunlight, and was inspired to change my life for the better) it could have been. Not every moment in our lives is a story worth telling. But a beautiful story can happen to anyone, at anytime.  All we need to do is pay attention.

With excitement and optimism,

Alex