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Sol Davis

Storytelling: An Interview with Jordan Hill

Interview by Sol Davis

Jordan HillSol: As a child at a recent birthday party asked after being released from the coils of your tale spinning: "How do you remember the stories?"  In other words, what is your process for storytelling?

Jordan: My process is pretty straightforward--I read or hear a story, and then I try to tell it to someone (anyone!).  If it's written, I might read it again, but the best way for me to remember it is simply to tell it, as much as possible.  I have a pretty good memory, so that helps.  But more importantly is the fact that remembering stories is NOT the same as memorizing, as people often think.  Rather, it is more akin to remembering life experiences.  For the most part, people don't have to work to remember remarkable things that have happened to them in their life (or their day yesterday)--it simply happens, and when someone asks, "How was your day?" you don't think twice before telling the story of whatever happened.  In the same way, if one imagines a story vividly enough (whether through hearing it, reading it, or seeing it performed), then it almost becomes like one's own memories, and simply telling the story becomes as natural as telling a friend what happened to you the other day.

Created on: 
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Arizona Board of Regents