The Fungible Nature of Story or Jane Eyre Was One Funny Ten Year Old–Who Knew?

So I’m plowing through McKee and Campbell and all sorts of other thinkers, delving into the principles of story narrative with a mind to reinvent the working notion of advertising campaigns for our agency.  By focusing on the basic foundations of story, perhaps we can more easily reorient both our work and ourselves away from a push-driven, objectives-based, communications-controlling POV toward a more two-way, push-pull, communications sharing perspective.  Anyway, I’m reading a lot lately…

A Pre-Victorian Lisa Simpson If You Will
A Pre-Victorian Lisa Simpson If You Will

At the same time, my wife has been reading two chapters of Charlotte Bronte’s classic gothic novel Jane Eyre every night to our (now five days away from) nine year old. Despite some digressions to explain the meaning of archaic terms like ‘ligature,’ ‘wretched,’ and my personal favorite–‘bilious’–it’s been one of the nicest surprises in months.  I look forward to hearing the next installment each night; somehow in the intervening thirty or so years since last I spent any time with young Jane, she grew to be funny and spunky and insightful in a way I never recognized as an eighth grader.

It’s funny how a great story might not speak to you–at least not right away–and yet it inevitably finds its audience.  Which gives me real hope that if we make great brand stories and get them out to people who appreciate them, those people will be inspired to do a lot of the storytelling for us, widening the circle, and finding an engaged, participatory audience.

By Dennis Ryan, CCO, Element 79

Leave a Reply