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  • And I think you've also said if I was telling you a story, I wouldn't say Chuck, I met this guy and he was 6 ft tall and it was 100 degrees out.

  • I would have been like, this guy was massive and it was sweltering, and I was going super fast.

  • I mean, we wouldn't talk to each other if we were telling that story that way.

  • Exactly.

  • You would particularized language and you would burn the language.

  • What we call you would misstate things, but you would misstate things in a way where the language was just your own and it was a language.

  • It was really unique just to that story.

  • And so the toughest part of my job is to reinvent story storytelling, a za pro, pre it for every single story, whether it's a novel or a short story, that's tricky to dio.

  • It's exhausting, and with so much of my work is, uh, is about listening to people listening to how they burn the language, how they sort of warp and re invent a language when they tell a story, and with the lock down that's become almost impossible, where would you go to listen to that.

  • And would you do it on the sly?

  • Or was it just conversations with people you knew?

  • Ah, lot of times it would be in groups.

  • It would be a parties, because at parties you're looking for people who throw out a topic.

  • And then you're looking to see how readily people engaged with the topic.

  • Uh, the workshop that I was running with students just before the lock down.

  • We were talking about a magazine story used bookstore that a recently recently closed, and someone in the group said that people who were selling their used copies of their collections of Playboy would no longer have a place to sell them.

  • And then somebody else said, I wonder if that's how the big box of porn in the woods happens.

  • And everyone at the table students from the age of 18 to 65 70 all leaned forward and they all had a story about finding a box of porn or a duffel bag or garbage bag of porn in the woods or in the desert or on the beach or stuffed up a tree.

  • And they all found these things as Children, and they none of them had ever talked about the experience.

  • And so finding that experience that resonates with everyone but that no one has really openly discussed is a big part of listening and then listening to the language with which they finally talk about it, uh, it Z is such is so powerful to discover that thing that everyone holds in common.

  • But everyone thinks that they're alone in their experience off Mhm.

  • It's interesting how you create Chuck because I always assumed and maybe this is true of a typical novelist, is there?

  • They're like, I'm gonna make this masterpiece and I'm gonna drop it on the world and they're gonna They're gonna be in awe at what I created.

  • But you seem to you like I'm testing myself in the world.

  • In fact, I'm mirroring the world to a certain extent and finding these things that people never knew existed.

  • And then I'm putting my construct on it, and then I'm putting it back out.

  • But you must already be somewhat confident that there's something resonating there because, like I said, you've almost free road tested it exactly.

  • You know, you've taken it to so many people and you have tested, whether or not they engage with it, whether or not they have a similar experience.

  • And then they help develop the idea.

  • Because if they have experienced something like that than they consort of flesh out the theme with another example, probably a better example of what I brought to them.

  • And they can also tell me if the if the theme or the idea has been explored in popular culture in recent history, because you just don't be treading well trod ground and so taking it to people and sort of feel testing.

  • It does that that tests whether people engage it, develops the idea with those people's experience, and it tests whether or not the thing is worth pursuing if it's already been sort of explored already in the culture.

  • So parties kind of used to be your research and development lab in a way.

  • But now that's hard, harder to do, or it's impossible to do because you could have those same people on a zoom call and they might say nothing if you bring up the box of porn on a zoom call, whereas in a group environment you could see the queues and then it would start.

  • Exactly.

  • And the other most important aspect of testing it is that especially when I teach, the most important feedback people can get to their work is when they read it aloud and they listen to the emotional reaction, that kind of un intellectualized, gasp or laugh or that fantastic silence that indicates tension, because after that, what they get is intellectualized academic feedback, which is almost entirely useless.

  • What you want to hear is how the story works in front of an audience where it lags.

  • Where is it where it gets boring, uh, to discover with laughs are where you didn't realize it was a laugh there.

  • Uh, you know what?

  • You need an extra time on extra beat to allow that laugh to build, where you might be able to add a laugh after that.

  • And so reading it and testing in front of an audience just for their unfiltered emotional reaction is the most important aspect of that process.

  • And on services like Zoom, it doesn't work because only one person at a time can make a noise.

  • Why?

  • Why what?

And I think you've also said if I was telling you a story, I wouldn't say Chuck, I met this guy and he was 6 ft tall and it was 100 degrees out.

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A2 language porn testing people listening experience

TESTING STORYLINES: Why It's Powerful To Find A Subject That Resonates With People - Chuck Palahniuk

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/11/18
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