While I worked at the MuseWeb Foundation, I researched, compiled, and designed a storytelling handbook with the goal of guiding high school students and others through the process of recording stories and tours about their towns as a part of the Be Here: Main Street project the MuseWeb Foundation manages for the Smithsonian’s Stories from Main Street program.

Below are the links to and descriptions of the pdfs located on the MuseWeb Foundation site.

Chapter One: Introduction

This section explains the Stories from Main Street and Be Here: Main Street projects and introduces the national partners.

Chapter Two: Storytelling Basics

This section goes over nonfiction narrative and basics of storytelling that will help you craft an engaging nonfiction story about your town.

Chapter Three: Getting Started

This section helps you narrow down your topic and choose the medium in which you would like to tell your story – audio or video – and whether you want to create a tour.

Chapter Four: Research Tips

This section is to help you if you want to use research to tell a broader narrative about the town. It will guide you through the steps for research and gives tips on how to use archives to find historical documents and images.

Chapter Five: Scripting

This section takes you through the steps of scripting audio and video projects, so you have a solid plan as you begin to record your project.

Chapter Six: Interviewing

This section helps you if you plan to interview others for their story. It contains tips and tricks to make sure you get the most out of your interviews.

Chapter Seven: Recording

This section guides you through the process of recording your audio and video stories. It has tips to make your story dynamic and ensure the quality is high.

Chapter Eight: Editing

This section will help you as you edit your audio and video projects. There is also a list of free editing sofware and sites that have free music and sound effects that you can use.

Chapter Nine: Publishing Your Project / Uploading

This section will help you publish your audio and video stories on Soundcloud and YouTube, as well as geolocate your content on izi.TRAVEL. Each of these platforms has thorough guides on how to upload and use their platforms, so this handbook is simply meant as a starting point and links you to the platform’s own user guides for more information.

Chapter Ten: Marketing Your Project

This section is mainly for organizations who want to publicize their content, but can also be used by individuals who want to tell their friends and followers about a story or tour they’ve created. The guide covers social media, traditional media, and other ideas. It also has examples and templates to use.

Chapter Eleven: Facilitating Difficult Dialogues

This section is for organizations who want to plan programming around topics related to the traveling exhibition. The guide walks the organization through planning, facilitating, and evaluating the facilitated dialogue program.

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