More Work with Stories

Working with Stories has a companion volume — More Work with Stories: Advanced Topics in Participatory Narrative Inquiry. As the name implies, the second book covers advanced topics such as where PNI came from and what it takes to be a PNI practitioner. If you are a professional story worker, or you want to be one, More Work with Stories is for you. You can download the PDF version of More Work with Stories now.

As of early 2022, I still haven't managed to get back to finishing More Work with Stories. I had originally intended to finish it right after Working with Stories was done, but I couldn't face another six months of editing and formatting. So instead I veered off into other projects:

  1. NarraFirma (software for participatory narrative inquiry)
  2. Narratopia (a story sharing game)
  3. Confluence (a book about complexity)
  4. a half-finished book of essays on commercial and conversational storytelling

I do hope to come back and finish More Work with Stories someday. I am guessing that when I do come back to it, I will also come back to Working with Stories and update it with a new edition.

In the meantime, as I said, you can read the PDF version of More Work with Stories now. If you do read it, please send me feedback so I can improve it when I get around to finishing it.

More Exercises and Variations

These are descriptions of some newly forming prototype exercises, or variations of existing exercises, that I've been working on since finishing Working with Stories. They will be incorporated into the fourth edition of WWS if and when I update the book.

Ground truthing exercise - In this exercise, people juxtapose parts of a document with stories of their experiences. The comparison helps them evaluate and improve the document.

Bubble up stories exercise - A variation on the Twice-Told Stories exercise in which stories are passed around a room to:

  1. collect some meaningful, resonant stories (ones that "bubble up")
  2. connect people together in a shared experience
  3. introduce people to the value of story sharing and sensemaking
  4. help people think about a topic together

Sticker stories exercise (PDF, DOCX) - A lightning-fast version of a sensemaking landscape exercise, done with printed sticky-note stories, to get people working with collected stories in a short time frame.

Local folk tales exercise - An imaginative exercise for families, workgroups, communities, and organizations in which people explore their common identity, context, and purpose by sharing real and fictional stories about things that can and can't and should and shouldn't happen.

Story-ended Questions Workshop (PDF, DOCX) - An hour-long workshop in which people (a) learn about conversational story sharing and (b) practice eliciting stories and supporting story sharing.