Author Roger Rosenblatt Encourages Others to Tell Their StoryOct. 6, 2009
That's the theme behind "Tell Me A Story: Why We Talk to Each Other" delivered by Roger Rosenblatt, an author, former essayist for "Newshour," and former editor at "Time" and "U.S. News & World Report." A highly decorated storyteller himself, he now teaches students at Stony Brook the art of storytelling. Rosenblatt is a finalist for Baylor's Robert Foster Cherry Award for teaching excellence, and is delivering his lecture as a part of that process. His message is that everyone has a story to tell, even when they think they don't or can't. He recalled an engineering student who he sees as an example.
A story doesn't have to be dramatic, amazing, or heart-wrenching to be of value, says Rosenblatt. It's an opportunity to examine ourselves and recognize the value in sharing ourselves with others. He has told stories on television, in fiction and non-fiction books, and in magazine writing, winning a number of awards on the way. In his career, the story that is perhaps the most memorable of his career is one who would never wish to write. It's a "New Yorker" article entitled "Making Toast," telling the story of moving in with his son-in-law and grandkids after the untimely death of his daughter.
It's a gut-wrenching story that has touched many. But Rosenblatt stresses that this process of writing should not be limited to the decorated, the dramatic, or the touching. Whether its students or those attending his lecture, he looks for that moment when people realize that they have a rich and meaningful story to tell.
For a link to Rosenblatt's essays on Newshour, visit KWBU.org. For KWBU News, I'm Derek Smith.