Capture Stories About a Shared Experience

Capture Shared ExperiencesI recently listened to an episode of the Snap Judgement, a podcast that captures true stories from ordinary people. This episode was about the day the ballistic missile alert was accidentally sent to the residents of Hawaii. It was was a compilation of stories from people who experienced those 38 minutes believing the worst was about to happen. Each person’s experience was unique but taken together, they conveyed so much more than could be understood by hearing only one account.

Beyond captivating me for 35 minutes, it made me think about how this technique could be used for sharing all kinds of life stories.

As I thought of possible applications, September 11, 2001, was the first thing that came to mind. Although it has been more than 17 years since those attacks, I can still remember how that day unfolded for me. Over the years, I have swapped stories about that day with family and friends. I probably could work my little story into a memoir, but by itself, it’s likely to just fade away.

However, if I collect the memories of several family members and put them together with the events about the attacks, I might have something very worthwhile. As I did by listening to the stories of those who experienced that day in Hawaii, I can imagine that my young nieces and nephews would get a much better understanding of what that moment in time was like.

Capture Stories About Happy Events Too!

Share Wedding StoriesDon’t reserve this type of collective storytelling for negative events or events in the news. You could use it for the birth of a child, a wedding, a vacation, or any event experienced by a group of people.

Ask 5 – 10 people to write a little about their experience of the event. Put the experiences together with details of the event itself and a few photos. Then you can have a little book printed* or a narrated photo slideshow put together.

This type of project is very manageable and will likely create a big impact on those who receive it.

Let me know in the comments below if you have done anything like this or if this sparks any ideas.

Let us know what you think!


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