Storytellers Are Coached By Nell

Tell Your Story

We love "regular folks" with real stories or "weird folks" with real stories as well as so-called "Bloomington glitterati" with real stories...Anyone can pitch a story to Nell via email, phone, Facebook messaging or interpretive dance. She will help you make it compelling to hear and fun for you to tell. Photo on this page features William Bennett who had never told a story to an audience in his life. And he had a great time and left the audience very entertained and satisfied!

How does Nell coach and direct storytellers?

1 A one-on-one sit-down to explore the story. Tell Nell your story and she will listen with rapt attention. Right there you're having a blast!

2 Nell helps you find ways to keep the story to 10 minutes, find the funny, look for interesting metaphors.

3 Storytellers who want to, meet for a dress rehearsal at Bear's Place. The timing of this is usually Sunday afternoon before a Wednesday show date. Here the storytellers support one another as they practice with the microphone and experience telling the story to a very small supportive audience of Storyzilla crew and fellow tellers. This part can feel a little scary and things "get real" but rest assured that if you are a little (or a lot) scared, you are building your confidence and will have even MORE fun on show day.

Wow, I get coached by Nell for free?
Yes! Storytellers selected for the show pay no money to learn great storytelling and performance skills from Nell. Storytellers are expected to tell all their friends about the show and to help fill the back room of Bear's Place with all their over 21 aged pals. This makes Nell and Bear's Place manager VERY HAPPY and we like that. A lot.

What if I have an interesting story but it doesn't fit into the theme?
Call Nell! She loves interesting stories and can either help you fit it into a theme or she will build a theme to fit your story. Don't be shy, you have nothing to lose by sending her an email to nellwax at yahoo dot com. That is code. Figure it out and we will not vote you off the island.

Tell me more!!

More Info For the Intensely Curious...

How does the director work with me to help me find and craft my story?
See the description above for the steps of this process.

I am a screaming introvert, how much experience with performance or storytelling do I need to have to participate?
You need absolutely no experience. We are an introvert-friendly show. If you are compelled to tell a story, just bring your willingness to share your truth, play and work with Nell, practice your story and then advertise the show to your friends (we can help you know how to do that).

How long does my story have to be?
Stories are about 10 minutes long and Nell helps you make it the right length and helping you feel great about it. If you think you may have a story, but worry about the length, talk to Nell because she has many ways of helping with that.

Do the stories all need to be true, and told from a first-person perspective?
Yes. We stress that stories be true and lived by the person who tells them. That said, there is room for playful hyperbole, metaphor, etc. in the telling. Perspective can be played with... but usually first person present tense is most exciting.

Can I read my story?
A big part of the appeal of this art form is the free flow of telling and connection that happens when a story is told, not read; therefore all Storyzilla performances are either done without notes or very, very smoothly read. Whether or not a story may be read is up to Nell's discretion.

When do I work with Nell?
Nell usually works with tellers after 5 on weekdays and during the day on Sundays.  Dress rehearsal with live sound and lights is Sunday afternoon at happens at Bear's Place back room (we have the space reserved just for us).

How much time commitment is required to prepare for a show?
That varies a lot from teller to teller. Your time spent on honing and crafting and practicing your story will vary according to your own needs.

Do you have to have a costume or props?  Can you, if you so choose?
No costumes or props are necessary but they are allowed if the teller and director
decide they work for the story.

What should I wear?
Dress in a way that makes you feel happy and is fun for the audience to look at. Check with Nell if you are unsure.

Are the acts individual storytellers or could you do a duo/trio sort of thing?
Usually we feature individual storytellers, but we are open to experimentation! We love variety and surprises.

May I record my own story?
We welcome storytellers taping or filming their own story (nothing else in the show), but Storyzilla does not promise any thing will be recorded in any way at this time. This may change if a volunteer makes this their own project. (hint...)

How often may I tell a story?
There is no limit if you have a great story!

The Bloomington venue is the back room at Bear's Place, does that mean only those 21 and over are allowed in?
Yes, Bear's Place back room is a 21+ venue - with no exceptions to that rule. We regret the exclusion of minors but it is one of the trade-offs we decided to make for a fantastic venue.

Is this a contest or just a showcase?
Storyzilla is not a contest and there is no voting for "best story" as in other story shows.

How often do you do these events?
Storyzilla Story Show in Bloomington happens on the first Wednesday of every month. Join the mailing list and Like us on Facebook to get regular updates.

Are Storyzilla Story Shows always at the same location and time in Bloomington?
Bear's Place owner and management in Bloomington have welcomed us so thoroughly and have been so supportive that we will be happily guzzling Hairy Bears, fine craft beers and their kick-ass cobb salad at our regular monthly show indefinitely.

Will Storyzilla happen in other towns?
Yes, we welcome the chance to produce in another town and need only to connect with a co-producer who wants to help make it happen. Contact Nell if you want to chat about that exciting possibility. We also offer house concerts featuring Nell's marvelous storytelling.

What if I have more questions?
Absolutely feel free to contact Nell. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. She is happy to answer any questions you may have.