1. Point (of view)
In digital storytelling, we have combined the idea of point—the reason the story exists—with an emphasis that it come from a first-person perspective. These are personal stories and have some relevance for the storyteller, which is passed on to the audience.
Digital stories are structured around a question, and the body of the story is the attempt of the storyteller to answer that question. The traditional arc of the digital story begins with the dramatic question, rises and falls around personal experience, and climaxes with a realization, which is often the result of critical reflection.
What is your dramatic question?
3. Emotional Content
In the digital storytelling workshop, we often ask participants to tell powerful personal stories, and this emotional access to another’s experience is a major part of the story’s impact for an audience. The storytelling process allows the storyteller to make (new) meaning out of personal experience.
What is your emotional content?
4. The Gift of Your Voice
An important part of the experience of a digital story both for the storyteller and the audience is the voice of the storyteller. The sound of the storyteller’s voice adds a level of vulnerability and authenticity to the story.
New media allows for easy access to musical recordings and ambient sounds to add layers of production to the story. The musical soundtrack is often called the manipulative part of the story, because music has such power to influence an audience’s emotional connection to a story.
What soundtrack elements are you looking for? 6. Economy
The normal digital story is 4-5 minutes long, and the written text is less than one double-spaced page of text. The typical story has approximately 30 visual images. This relatively small asset bank forces the storyteller to make critical choices about what and how to communicate layers of meaning in the story.
What images will you be looking for?
Successful stories make successful use of pace. The storyteller carefully considers how much to tell, show, or put in front of the audience at any given time, and also lets the story breathe, or pause, from time to time, especially at transitions.
What is the pacing going to be like and why?