How to Tell a Great Story: The 3 Cs of Storytelling

Nonfiction writers need good storytelling skills and techniques as much as do fiction writers. Watch this video tutorial with the 3 Cs of Storytelling

Learn more in Story Power! Available from Amazon

storytelling techniques - storytelling ideas - Story Power DVD + BONUSES

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Ronda Del Boccio

#1 best selling author, speaker, and Amazon Top Reviewer

About Ronda Del Boccio

Ronda Del Boccio is an award-winning and best Click for Member Home Pageselling author of both fiction and nonfiction. She tells transformational tales and helps visionary authors turn their dreams and imaginings into published books. See and order Ronda's books on Amazon.

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Nonfiction Writing and Storytelling Skills: How Much of My Story Do I Tell? Video Tutorial

If you've ever struggled with how much of a personal story to include in an article or nonfiction book chapter, you're not alone. That's one of the biggest issues about which people ask me with regard to storytelling.

Watch this video tutorial to gain insight into how much of your story to tell and how to focus on relevance and emotion in order to connect with your reader.

For more help with storytelling skills, you can get the streaming or DVD format of Story Power, a 90 minute in-depth storytelling class I did in Atlanta.

Story Power Hero's ourney Storyelling training streaming video

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Ronda Del Boccio

#1 best selling author, speaker, and Amazon Top Reviewer

About Ronda Del Boccio

Ronda Del Boccio is an award-winning and best Click for Member Home Pageselling author of both fiction and nonfiction. She tells transformational tales and helps visionary authors turn their dreams and imaginings into published books. See and order Ronda's books on Amazon.

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Book Review of Paranormal Romance Suspense Voodoo Butterfly by Camille Faye

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Welcome back to another Write On Purpose book review. Each week I review a well-written book, highlighting what makes it good from the reader’s perspective and what writing skills and techniques make it an irresistible read.Thus, each review serves both writers and readers.

This week's excellent read is a paranormal romantic suspense story Voodoo Butterfly by Camille Faye. This is her first book, an it is so good!

Read my 5 star review of Voodoo Butterfly on Amazon.

Here is the book description from Amazon:

Voodoo Butterfly by CAmille Fay CoverWhen twenty-five-year old Sophie Nouveau inherits her grandmother's voodoo shop she knows nothing about voodoo. Or her family's history of Mind Changers, who have the power to change evil people to good. To complicate matters, someone doesn't want Sophie in New Orleans and sends a series of death threats to scare her away from her new enchanted life.

Tipped off by her grandmother's ghost, Sophie realizes her mind-changing spell's been missing one magic ingredient: true love. If Sophie cannot experience transformative love, she cannot make her spell work, and she will be powerless to fight back when confronted by the one who wants her dead.

Fatal Flaw

No matter what genre you may prefer to read, the "ideal" point of view character has both strengths and flaws. Just like "real" people out here in the tangible world.

The most interesting tales feature 3-dimensional lead characters who have a fatal flaw which could keep them from reaching their ultimate desire.

Sophie's fatal flaws are her doubt and her walls. So scarred by her past is she that she is unable to open up to love. And I'm not only speaking of romance, though there is a strong romantic storyline.

As Sophie enters her new life in New Orleans after her grandmother's death, her emotional armor prevents her from experiencing friendship freely given. Poppy, co-owner of the Voodoo shop Sophia inherited, offers her open love and acceptance, yet she is too closed and distrusting to see it.

Sophie's past haunts her and affects current decisions and actions. This makes for good reading, because the reader wants her to overcome those old traumas and embrace her new power.

While her mindset definitely interferes with the budding romance, it also informs her daily decisions.

Author Tip: As an author, if you want to write deeper stories, pour that fatal flaw into every chapter. It adds emotion and intensity to your story. Give your reader something interesting to chew upon even after she finishes the book.

Where to Start Telling the Story

Common wisdom on where to begin a book is right in the middle of the action. I like to say start at the first sign of conflict. You only have a page or two to grab the reader by the metaphorical collar and compel her to keep reading.

For a few months now I have been reading submissions for a publisher, and I have become more keenly aware than ever how important the first couple of pages have become.

Indeed, some samples I have read are so awful that I don't get past page one, or even all the way to the end of it.

Voodoo Butterfly dives into the first conflict fairly quickly, but it begins with the past. The writing is good enough I turned the page, but I thought it was strange to start with history.

The tale began with Sophie's mom's funeral., which is back story, not current conflict  Back story is the stuff we want to learn about as it comes up in the POV character's memory or in some other direct experience.

Beginning with a funeral is tricky business, as the reader has not yet developed any affinity for the narrator. We don't know her yet, so how can we?

If I were to recommend one thing for this book, and it is a minor one, I would suggest making a slight modification to the start of the book.

Not that Ms. Faye asked me, BUT it's my review and my chance to give my own humble opinion while helping authors, so here goes. This is what I would do.

I ould take out the whole section about the mother's funeral and those feelings. THey'll all come up soon enough.

HOWEVER, from that section, I would definitely certainly bring in mom's box of secrets, as it is significant. That box, not the funeral or family oes, pulled me into the tale.

Imagine opening the story something like this:

I just inherited a voodoo shop in New Orleans? Fingers trembling, I read the letter again to review two shocking discoveries:I had an until-now unknown grandmother whom I would obviously never meet, and I now owned her business about which I knew nothing in a town about which I knew nothing. I had never even left my hometown.

Making a small shift to where a story starts can add even more suspense and build empathy. Right after a strong opening, there is time to have Sophie look through her box of secrets, perhaps adding the will to it.

The next thing that happens is the million butterfly march, so that definitely captures the reader's imagination.

Author Tip: Power up Descriptions

Powerful writing does not end with -ly. Power emanates from verbs and imagery. Here are some of my favorite examples that will help you show rather than explain action through the narrator's perceptions:

Describing emotion: Don't write "I was afraid" or I felt afraid." Show the reader how the fear acted and felt. Fiction writing is about the experience through the perception of the point of view character.

Whispers of fear slithered through me as reality settled in. I was lost.

Sadness pinned my heart to my chest.

Describing movement: You can avoid the more simplistic word and make the book more interesting for the reader. Look what word the author described the motion of the monarchs in these three passages.

Millions of monarch butterflies rushed down the street like a tangerine river.

The mass of them actually churned the air, making me feel as if I was in a churning cauldron of steaming stew.

Monarch butterflies crawled over every square inch of the building, making the church come alive The building twisted and turned with the movement of muscles and joints underneath a skin of orange and black iridescent wings.

Transformational Storytelling

Transformational stories are those with three basic elements:

  • Quest:  The hero searches for something important and undertakes a journey of transformation in order to attain it.
  • Tests: A road of trials
  • Loss: A dark night of the soul during which the hero could lose everything
  • Victory (or sometimes not): The hero ultimately wins despite insurmountable difficulties and crushing defeats.

In short, personal growth of the hero is a requirement. Change is what makes people want to read books. Something needs to be different by the end of the novel.

Throw a person into a situation she didn't ask for but ultimately decides to embrace. Add numerous challenges to overcome, including in this case death threats and someone actively trying to lead the Sophie off her path. Include allies and useful tools. And be sure to bring the point of view character to the brink of giving up more than once.

FUll of emotional scars, Sophie inherits a whole new life in a strange town and an innate power she didn't know she possessed when she inherits the shop. Thus begins her journey.

Her own doubts and fears make the various trials and tribulations she faces that much worse. Death threats frighten her, sure, but facing down her own personal demons terrifies her more, especially once she opens enough to truly care about those who care for her.

Personal Power

Voodoo Butterfly is a self-help book as well as a good read in that the reader learns about the power of the mind and heart while reading. There are lots of great mindset teachings threaded through the tale.

That's one of the things I love most about this book. Sophie doesn't merely make choices and deal with challenges. She develops a whole new perspective, and in so doing, the reader may perhaps glean some knowledge to help her develop her own personal power.

Get your own copy of Voodoo Butterfly

Buy Voodoo Butterfly on Amazon

You can read the book on any device or computer by downloading a free Kindle Reading App. If you need one, you'll see a link right there on ANY Kindle book page, below the buy box.

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About Ronda Del Boccio

Ronda Del Boccio is an award-winning and best selling author of both fiction and nonfiction. She tells transformational tales and helps visionary authors turn their dreams and imaginings into published books. See and order Ronda's books on Amazon.

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If you are an author

Want your book reviewed?

If you are an author or publisher desiring a review, here is everything you need to know:

Each Tuesday, read a book review on I delve deeper in these than I do for what I post on Amazon

Focusing on what makes a good read, these reviews benefit authors and readers alike. Each contains tips to help authors make their books more compelling.

Before posting here, I first write a review on Amazon, and I am an Amazon Top Reviewer; read my reviews at

If you are an author or publisher wanting a book review, go to my Review Request Page at and complete the form.

You will need to provide a digital copy of your book and be willing to accept my honest review or the possibility that I may choose not to review your book at all. My aim is to showcase good writing, and I won't know if your book measures up until I read it.

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#024 What Part of My Story Should I Share? Storytelling Help in Awakened Author Adventure Episode 24

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#024 What Part of My Story Should I Share? Storytelling Help in Awakened Author Adventure Episode 24

Welcome to the Awakened Author Adventure free writing podcast, where visionaries like you come for resources, tools and direction to help you write, publish and share your life-changing book!

Each week you get help in 1 of the 5 keys to author success in the BLISS Butterfly System, including how to write a book, book marketing help and more.

Your guide on this adventure is #1 best selling author, speaker and mentor Ronda Del Boccio, the Story Lady, (namely me). I’m PASSIONATE about turning world-changers into bestselling authors with grace, joy and ease.

Today’s teaching comes from the B for being on purpose in the BLISS Butterfly System.

If your book is not related with your purpose, you'll feel disconnected. Being an author is more than merely cranking out books. Watching or listening to this episode will show you the value and power of YOUR personal journey from zero to hero.

BLISS Butterfly - Follow your bliss - Follow Your B.L.I.S.S. - Celebrity Author Mentor - Book Marketing Coach - Ronda Del Boccio

BEING - Follow Your BLISS Poster - BLISS Butterfly - Write on Purpose

Cool Tool of the Week

This week's cool tool is an amazing app/browser extension that lets you send any webpage to your Kindle Reader or free Kindle app for more convenient reading.

You can find the Send to Kindle mobile app in Google Play, Amazon apps and the IOS App Store. Get the browser extension.  there is also a WordPress Plugin to add this button to your blog so readers can send articles to their Kindle for later enjoyment.

The Power of Storytelling

What was your favorite bedtime story as a kid? (You can answer in the comments!)

Even today, you are wired for stories. Maybe you loved to hear the story of Cinderella or the Zax as a child, but today you watch movies and/or read novels.

If you watch TV programs or reality shows, the stories of the characters or contestants captivate you.

Sharing your own story is a big part of the adventure, Yet you may wonder…How much of it do you share, though?

Think of that one kind of story everyone loves and you have your answer. Find out more about the hero's journey story in today's episode!

Watch or Listen to This Week’s Episode

If you are viewing this article on a site other than and don’t see the player, simply go to to listen.


Watch and listen.

Have a Question?

What’s your most burning question about writing, publishing, blogging, social media, book marketing, mindset, storytelling, product creation, author platform – ANY aspect of being an author?

Your question along with your name and website.could be featured in an upcoming episode of the Awakened Author Adventure. Simply go to the Question Page and ask a question now.

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Begin your 7-Day FREE Trial Premium Membership and you can be on the next live call!

Come back each week for directions, resources and inspiration to help you write, publish and share your life-changing message.

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Follow your BLISS!

Ronda Del Boccio, the Story lady –  bestselling author, speaker and mentor – this week helping you develop your storytelling skills


Blogging Advice: Storytelling Techniques and Ideas and MORE on Premium Member Call July 25 2013

Blogging Advice: Storytelling Techniques and Ideas and MORE on Premium Member Call July 25 2013

It's really easy to get caught up in writing blog posts that sound more like you're showing off your expertise than connecting with your ideal reader. That's usually the intent or desire, but so much of blogging comes across like, “I'm wonderful; let me convince you” than of solving problems.

What's the difference?

Storytelling is a big one! Find out why when you listen to this week's Premium Member call!

Lots of blogging advice today on the Premium Member call!

  • Help with:
  • Blog categories
  • Backing up your blog
  • storytelling techniques in blog posts

Also some great conversation about workflow and being strategic.

Login and listen to today's call.


Continue reading "Blogging Advice: Storytelling Techniques and Ideas and MORE on Premium Member Call July 25 2013"


Storytelling Techniques: How Can I Find and Use Stories in Your Life to Teach My Audience?


having storytelling techniques at your fingertips can provide tremendous inspiration for blogging, videos, and more.

When feeding my flock of chickens one day, they were clambering all over me and the food trying to get at it, and I realized what a fantastic demonstration of “feed your hungry market” they had created, so I made a video!

Watch the video now..

You don't have to be talking exclusively about your topic or expertise in order to teach something valuable to your audience. Metaphorical examples are among the best storytelling techniques, because you're connecting the dots for the reader in a way that tends to bypass resistance.

Where to find storytelling ideas

Story ideas are absolutely EVERYWHERE. Just pay attention while you're off living life. Here is an example I love.


What raising chickens has taught me about pitching (articles)

by Garrett Heath

Growing tired of the hefty price for organic, free-range eggs, I began keeping chickens in my San Antonio backyard.

I watched my feathered flock of Ruby, Tallahassee, and Shiloh grow from little chirping fuzzballs to sizeable clucking hens.

Though it appeared that they might never start laying, the past two weeks I have had my fill of farm-fresh eggs. I have found a lot of similarities between raising chickens and pitching stories and news for placement:

Do your research.

Prior to getting chickens, I did a lot of research into raising them. I gathered information on everything I could—from the best breed of chicken for my climate to how long chicks should stay under a heat lamp.

As you begin pitching stories, you have to go through a similar style of research. Subscribe to RSS feeds and look at what content does well on the sites you want to place content on. Do research into the editors and creators of the site. Share their stories on Twitter, or comment on Facebook. A little preparation can go a long way.

Baby chicks need gentle hands.

Baby chicks are delicate. They must have either the warmth of a heat lamp or a mother hen because it’s easy for chicks to get cold.

There is medicated chick feed to prevent Cocciodosis, a parasite to which chicks are particularly susceptible. Because they are smaller and more fragile, you have to be gentler in handling a chick than a full-grown hen.

Approaching an outlet you have never written for is different from approaching one you have a relationship with. Emails with a familiar editor can be more casual, but you’d be wise to approach correspondence with a new person more carefully.

Grapes are different from broccoli.

As my chickens began to develop, moving out from under the heat lamp and into the backyard, I found they loved treats—something different from the usual feed I scatter for them.

They have discerning taste, though. Tomatoes, strawberries, and grapes (their favorite) will bring them running, but foods such as cucumbers or broccoli warrant only mild interest before they turn their beaks away in disgust.

Knowing not only what types of content, but also the tone in which they should be written, is key to ensuring the outlet you pitch to is receptive. After all, no one likes broccoli. Not even chickens.

[RELATED: Register for our PR Measurement Summit by Aug. 1 to get an early-bird discount.]

An egg—finally (have a carton ready).

I thought my chickens would never lay eggs. I put a lot of effort into raising them from fluffy chicks to adult hens, from making sure they had a cozy coop, to waking up early (and I am not a morning person) to feed and water them.

I grew disillusioned as I checked the nesting box; it evolved from being something I looked forward to with anticipation of that first egg to a perfunctory task. Then it happened: On one of those routine checks I got an egg—and I kept getting eggs, multiple eggs, every day, allowing me to enjoy farm fresh, organic, free-range omelets and quiche whenever I got the craving.

Placing articles takes the same dogged determination, but when you find an outlet receptive to your stories you can build a trusting, professional relationship. Stories get pitched, your news appears on the site, omelets get made.

Garrett Heath blogs for Rackspace and has experience as a technical project manager in the cloud. Read his personal blog on restaurants and culture in San Antonio, or follow him on Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, and App Dot Net @gmh.

What can you learn from these examples?

1. Be present to what is happening in life.

2. Notice where you can draw a connection between the event and your customers/readers.

3. Keep something on which to take notes handy. (phone, notepad, etc.)

4. use these stories to teach your audience.

For more help with storytelling, get a fun yet intensive storytelling workshop on the Story Power storytelling techniques training, which you can a download or DVD from Amazon. Get it right now.

Follow your bliss!

Ronda Del Boccio, the Story Lady



What Can Jeff Foxworthy Teach Authors about Storytelling Techniques and Ideas?

What  Can Jeff Foxworthy Teach Authors about Storytelling Techniques and Ideas?

by Ronda Del Boccio

It seems people don't truly believe me when I say there are storytelling ideas everywhere. Comedians and country singers know this well.

storytelling techniques

Entrepreneurs come to me for help with how to write a book; One of the key elements that belongs in every chapter of a nonfiction book is a story.

The story may come from:

  • a customer success story
  • a restaurant visit
  • a conversation
  • a news story
  • something overheard
  • any life experience

Storytelling ideas are everywhere,

Recently, Kara asked, “How can I find a story for every chapter? I'm not a good storyteller.”

Before addressing the storytelling issue, pause and look at the mindset. as Kara repeats she's not good at something, she demonstrates storytelling techniques used to hold her back.

She probably has a whole narrative around not being a good storyteller and not being able to find good ideas. It becomes a well-worn pathway of the mind.

Looking for inspiration

Kara can find storytelling ideas anywhere in her life. Fiction authors know this well, because any event or person can inspire a story element.

as a fantasy author, I personally have used bits of conversation, people, and real life experiences as fodder for stories.

Why is nonfiction any different? It isn't!

Jeff Foxworthy finds his inspiration in everyday life. He is a master storyteller.

Watch this Jeff Foxworthy video.and see if you can find some inspiration for yourself.

Here are a few of the situations that inspired him for this comedy routine:

  • a wedding rehearsal dinner
  • lawn ornaments
  • hunting
  • visiting relatives
  • rednecks (of course!)

3 elements of storytelling

  1. Content – the “what happened”: Most people stop here and merely repeat “this happened, then that, then the next thing.” This makes for a boring story.
  2.  Context – the “fit” or relevance to the reader/listener: This is why the story matters to your audience.
  3. Connection – the “why this matters” emotion. The story needs to matter to your audience on an emotional level, whether the story is humorous or serious.

What can Jeff Foxworthy teach about good storytelling techniques?

Continue reading "What Can Jeff Foxworthy Teach Authors about Storytelling Techniques and Ideas?"


Can Storytelling Techniques Help Develop a Powerful Mindset?

Can Storytelling Techniques Help Develop a Powerful Mindset?

Check out storytelling techniques in action by remembering the thoughts that run around inside your head. These might be thoughts about:

  • The economy
  • Business
  • Your love life
  • Your kids
  • Your partner
  • The job market
  • Losing weight
  • Breaking a bad habit

Whatever thoughts run around inside your head are your own storytelling techniques in action!

People are constantly telling themselves stories about the day. A musician just complained to me that he is having a hard times getting gigs (jobs) because of the current leader of his country. What the  WHAT???

Catch yourself telling stories about your life.

What story do you tell yourself about things that happen?

Imagine you have a day in which these things happen:

  • the delivery boy throws your newspaper into the bushes; plus the sprinkler is on. Your paper is drenched and unreadable.
  • A computer virus wipes out your entire hard drive.
  • Your tire blows out on the way to a big meeting and you have to walk miles. And it's raining hard.
  • Your child continues to give you the silent treatment for no apparent reason.

The typical response one might imagine for each of these is some version of “oh NO!” (with or without cuss words).

Eeyore (from the Winnie the Pooh series) comes to mind. He complains that things like that always happen to him. Here's one of the great Eeyore quotes:

Nobody tells me. Nobody keeps me informed. I make it 17 days come Friday since anyone spoke to me.

A series of orange juice commercials catches my ear, because they are a fantastic mindset lesson.

When the person who is going to have a series of “bad” things happen in a day, his or her response is “perfect!” (said with enthusiasm, not sarcasm)  rather than dread.

Here is one of those orange juice commercials:

Watch the video now.

Perception Shapes Reality

There is no “set response” to a thing happening.

Here is my version of responding to a “bad day” with positive expectancy and a great mindset:

Imagine I'm looking into a crystal ball that predicts my day…

Crystal Ball: “Your website will be down for six hours.

Me: “Excellent! Right after I send my customers a special coupon?”

Crystal Ball: “Yep.”

Me: “Perfect! Anything else?”

Crystal Ball: “The order button link will not work for no apparent reason.”

Me: “Great! And I'll spend several hours trying to track down the problem, right?”

Crystal Ball: “Sure will.”

Me “Good thing I had my mindshift!”

Use storytelling techniques to aft a powerful story

1. Catch your typical story running in your mind.

2. Decide the more positive, profitable story you wish to tell yourself.

3. Write down that new beneficial story

4. Rehearse saying it often.

5. Join the Miracle Mindshift Month and transform your mindset in just 31 days.

“Good Thing I Had My Mindshift!”!

your mindset is 100% under your control. It is not dependent upon your nation's leader, the economy, the weather, the day of the week, or anything else.

The Miracle Mindshift Month provides simple yet potent tools that can help you change your mind for the better.

Click the banner to join the Miracle Mindshift Month now.

Get Started Today and SAVE with this Miracle Mindshift Special Offer!

Will you practice storytelling techniques that move you toward your goals? I sure hope so!

Follow your B.L.I.S.S.!

Ronda Del Boccio, the Story lady

#1 bestselling nonfiction and fantasy author * Celebrity Author Mentor

Creator of the BLISS Butterfly and the Awakened Author Challenge

(See the original article source here)