Folk Tales – Or Hanging Out In the Break Room

By CBramkamp creative writing, Writing Encouragement Comments Off on Folk Tales – Or Hanging Out In the Break Room

Urban legends are fascinating; they are the folktales of our modern culture.

Unlike fiction or a comic story, which must have a plausible framework  to give it structure, and ironically, believability, an urban legend creates framework by claiming the story is really true.  This is how a urban legend begins:  I know a woman who is the aunt of a boy who  went to school with me. This is pedigree enough, and the teller launches into  the story of:   The woman (the aunt of a boy who went to school with me) who dried out  her poodle in the microwave.  Or the uncle who woke up in Vegas in a bathtub of ice and one less kidney.  You know these stories, you hand them around during a break at a conference or as a way to start a conversation with a group of strangers at a party.  There is nothing wrong with passing along a “fabulously-true-because-you- heard-it-from-someone-who-knows” story, but be more careful in writing these down, or citing the stories as “fact” in a school or business paper. And also know that in a good fictional story, the situation and resolution must make  more sense than the “true” urban legend ever did.


To find our more about writing check out Don’t Write Like You Talk, by me.

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