Books for Storytelling

Recommended reading for mastering the art of storytelling.


Why Storytelling is so Powerful


The Intelligence Paradox

The Intelligence Paradox

Discussion of the Savanah Principal which contends that that humans are not good at coping with things not found in the ancestral environment and that stories are a key way we learn new information.

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Start with Why

Start With Why

A journey into how the limbic system processes information and what this means for changing hearts and minds. The author also gave a TEDx talk on the same topic which summarises his core thesis.

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Made to stick

Made to Stick

Based over a decade of research into urban myths, viral stories and effective messages, the authors share what we can do to help our stories stick in the minds of our audience.

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Storytelling Structure and Theory

Save the Cat

Save the Cat

An easy, fun read which breaks down the small number of patterned behind almost all movie screenplays, although many of the truths apply far wider than just the big screen.

 

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Sophie van Voorst

The Golden Theme

Short book espousing the basic idea that good stories often follows the ‘We are all the same’ arc. A short, quick read which belies its depth and power.

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Invisible Ink

Invisible Ink

Longer book by the author of The Golden Theme in which he speaks more broadly about powerful story structure.

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Advice on telling effective stories


Contagious

Contagious

The New York Times bestseller that explains why certain products and ideas become popular. It also contains lesson of which emotions to use in stories and what to include to improve your chances of viral success.

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Thinking, Fast and Slow

Thinking, Fast and Slow

A rather meaty book on how our minds work and the common traps we fall into. A must for any storyteller looking to connect with people in the real world.

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Joe Hall

Stories for Work

Some useful ideas around telling storying in the work environment.

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Advanced story telling techniques


Into the Woods

Into the Woods

Top BBC writer John York breaks down different types of stories and contends that they all come from one overarching myth – the fairytale journey into the woods.

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Anatomy of Story

Anatomy of Story

John Truby is a major movie story theorist and has created his own version of the archetypical narrative, the ‘22 block’ story structure.

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Story

Story

Robert McKee is a major figure in the screenwriting community and this is his signature tome. It’s not a quick read but it is a good one.

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