#22 – Tip – Include what the story is really about.

At the Monday conference I attended in my town on the Units of Study for Teaching Writing, Lucy taught us revision tips – after telling the story bit by bit and using storytelling techniques, she said to ask “What is happening internally with the character (often stated by finishing these sentences: I wonder….I notice…I remember…. )” and ask “What is this story really about?”

My story summary is about the time I spent two Saturdays ago chatting on the phone for three hours to help my oldest prepare for a job interview. Here is my attempt at writing it as a small moment that uses Lucy’s the revision tips:

I picked up my blue iPhone and texted Bridgit by typing “I’m free to chat today.” and I got this text right back, “How about in 20 minutes?” After sending a happy face reply, I grabbed my laptop, my phone and headed upstairs to my bedroom. Up there, I could talk and type on the computer easily. 

After a bit, the phone rang. “Hi mom, I sent you a google doc with the questions.” 

“Great, let me open up that file,” I said set the phone on speaker, freeing up my hands. The document was a list of questions she had received from her recruiter and also another document was her resume. 

“So tell me, why this company?” I asked using one of the questions. And she started to rattle off things that attracted her to this job. And I typed things she said into the document as she talked. When she started to ramble, I asked clarifying questions. Then told her to start over and answer it again and I typed the clearer answer. When she hesitated on an anecdote to use, we brainstormed together and then I asked her again and typed her chosen story. 

Finally, I looked at the phone and it showed a low battery and that we were approaching hour three of this conversation. “I think I better go soon. I hope this helped.” 

As I hung up, I wondered about Bridgit. I would hire her in a heart beat. She is very accomplished for her 27 years. She is smart and has a great work ethic. Any company would be lucky to get her. And one will. As her mom, I just want it to be a company that she is passionate to help and one that treats her well as a valued employee. And one that includes hours off to enjoy things, like visits from her mom on holidays!

8 thoughts on “#22 – Tip – Include what the story is really about.

  1. Julieanne says:

    Really loved the content and the craft here. I'm sitting there with you with the speaker phone and your fingers flying on the google doc. What a wonderful momma you are. Who wouldn't want to be with you on those hours off! Love to you Sally and your girl.


  2. DalilaE says:

    Thank you for starting with the way you crafted this slice. As I work to hone this skill, I appreciated reading about how you brought this moment to life. I like how you used the nearly-out-of-power phone to advance time and reveal how long the your call had lasted. I could really relate to this slice! Best of luck to your daughter.


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