Why Story Crossroads Loves National Storytelling Network (You Could, too!)–Part 3 of 5

This is the third of five parts on benefits to take advantage of as a member of the National Storytelling Network. Story Crossroads is proud to be an organization member of NSN.

Awesomeness Revealed:

  • Part 1 – Borrow NSN’s nonprofit status for grants–as individual or organization – REVEALED
  • Part 2 – Research through Greenwood’s World Folklore and Folklife Database for free – REVEALED
  • Part 3 – Delve into NSN’s Accreditation Program – TODAY
  • Part 4 – Benefit from in-state tuition for Storytelling Masters (with virtual options)
  • Part 5 – Participate in special interest groups – education, organizations, healing, leadership/producing

You want to teach and train others. You want to teach and train storytelling with credentials. You aim to always raise the standard of storytelling as viewed by the general public and peers alike.

Assumptions, always assumptions. Whether or not they are all true, that is fine.

NOW…DID YOU KNOW THAT YOU CAN BOOST YOUR CHANCES OF BEING SELECTED AND HIRED WITH THAT DISTINCTION WHEN YOU ARE A DUES-PAYING MEMBER OF THE NATIONAL STORYTELLING NETWORK AND HAVE YOUR WORK REVIEWED?

Crazy enough, I heard that some people in the early years of the American Storytelling Movement were against having standards with storytelling. Are definitions that threatening? Are standards the next step to taking away from traditional storytelling? Do standards take away the magic of the art–the fluidity and spontaneous side of storytelling?

We have a spectrum of storytelling from pure traditional storytelling to pure organized/platform storytelling and everything in between.

Yet, I watched traditional storytelling performed from Indonesia, Ireland, throughout Africa and South America being streamed thanks to the 9-day NSN’s Virtual Conference & Festival of early June 2020. No matter the style–traditional or more on the side of platform telling–people had high standards in regards to their work. Anyone witnessing these concerts would attest to the quality.

BUT…without people seeing what you are able to do, how can someone judge your work? Even if people can see you through YouTube channels or other social platforms, does that always show and prove that you could teach or mentor others in that art?

Being able to perform does not always mean you can teach.

As a story producer of events, I write what feels like a gazillion grants. I get funding when it is obvious to that grant committee that the performer has arts education experience. I need an amazing performer AND teacher. What better and easier way to get funding–so I or other producers–can hire you? What if you received a stamp of approval from the NSN Accreditation Program? It certainly makes the life of a grant-writer easier. Please be kind.

Besides, the federal government already lists the National Storytelling Network as who they can trust for recommendations of tellers on national and international levels.

Once reviewed and approved, you are good for five years with intermittent reports or check-ins. That is only fair, as you must always be working on your craft. Always.

Please note that this NSN Accreditation is non-degree teaching and training of storytelling only.

As shared from the NSN website, the program consists of:

1) an application that demonstrates the scope of instruction,

2) criteria for acceptance, and

3) a framework for reviewer recommendation. 

Excited? Anxious to work on the NSN Accreditation Program to affirm your skills with teaching others? Glad you are already a member of the National Storytelling Network? Wishing you were a member of the National Storytelling Network?

Today is that time. Go here for the opportunity to be connected and be part of the National Storytelling Network.

Want to discover more beyond this 5-part Blog Series? Check out the the next Story Crossroads adventure on Saturday, June 20, 2020 from 9:00am-10:30am MDT from your computer- The Big Why Panel: Historical Storytelling meets Humanities.

See our 5-video playlist from the Story Crossroads Spectacular by clicking here.

Why Story Crossroads Loves National Storytelling Network (You Could, too!)–Part 2 of 5

This is the second of five parts on benefits to take advantage of as a member of the National Storytelling Network. Story Crossroads is proud to be an organization member of NSN.

Awesomeness Revealed:

  • Part 1 – Borrow NSN’s nonprofit status for grants–as individual or organization – REVEALED
  • Part 2 – Research through Greenwood’s World Folklore and Folklife Database for free – TODAY
  • Part 3 – Delve into NSN’s Accreditation Program
  • Part 4 – Benefit from in-state tuition for Storytelling Masters (with virtual options)
  • Part 5 – Participate in special interest groups – education, organizations, healing, leadership/producing

You are hungry. You are hungry for stories. You are willing to research and understand them better…or discover them for the first time.

More assumptions. Whether or not they are all true, that is fine.

Now…did you know that you can explore one of the best databases on folktales when you are logged in as a dues-paying member of the National Storytelling Network?

Julie Dunbar, editor with Wold Folklore and Folklife, said, “Every group in every culture creates its own folklore traditions that provide an unparalleled approach to understanding their fears, hopes, loves, wants, taboos, and beliefs.”

This Greenwood database has the potential to unlock mysteries whether you develop personal tales OR folktales.

Donald Davis, when developing stories, focuses on a year. He then gathers as much information about that year–current events, what games and such were popular at the time, etc. So if you lean towards personal stories, then have comfort and confidence in the usage of the database.

Csenge Zalka, famous for her uncanny and meticulous research ability with folktales, easily convinced 60+ people to sign up for her virtual 90-minute workshop through Story Crossroads. She is now offering more of those workshops in Hungarian and back to English again. She listed many resources though also praised this Greenwood database. So if you lean towards folktales, then have comfort and confidence in the usage of the database.

If you lean towards both personal tales and folktales, then you have ultimate comfort and confidence. Congrats…and get to work.

And…how do you access it? On the National Storytelling Network website in the upper right corner is the “Members Only” page. I recommend already being logged in, which is possible on the right side of any page you explore on the National Storytelling Network page.

Once on that page, there are two codes you need at the bottom.

Only when you are logged in will the magic appear to open a world of research much like the wardrobe that leads to Narnia.

Search for any of the following subjects (as listed on the NSN site):

  • Celebrations and Rituals
  • Food and Drink
  • Holidays and Festivals
  • Music and Dance
  • Religion and Belief
  • Tales, Myths, and Urban Legends
  • Traditional Arts and Crafts

Intrigued? Glad you are already a member of the National Storytelling Network? Wishing you were a member of the National Storytelling Network?

Today is that time. Go here for the opportunity to be connected and be part of the National Storytelling Network.

Want to discover more beyond this 5-part Blog Series? Check out the the next Story Crossroads adventure on Saturday, June 20, 2020 from 9:00am-10:30am MDT from your computer- The Big Why Panel: Historical Storytelling meets Humanities.

Why Story Crossroads Loves National Storytelling Network (You Could, too!)–Part 1 of 5

This is the first of five parts on benefits to take advantage of as a member of the National Storytelling Network. Story Crossroads is proud to be an organization member of NSN.

Awesomeness Revealed:

  • Part 1 – Borrow NSN’s nonprofit status for grants–as individual or organization – TODAY
  • Part 2 – Research through Greenwood’s World Folklore and Folklife Database for free
  • Part 3 – Delve into NSN’s Accreditation Program
  • Part 4 – Benefit from in-state tuition for Storytelling Masters (with virtual options)
  • Part 5 – Participate in special interest groups – education, organizations, healing, leadership/producing

You like being paid. You like being paid as a performing artist. In fact, you love receiving money.

Yes, I made some assumptions there. It’s fine whether or not all of that is true.

Now…did you know that you can borrow another entity’s nonprofit status called a sponsorship program? The National Storytelling Network, being nonprofit, offers dues-paying members the opportunity to borrow that status called Sponsored Member Program.

Why would you want to borrow nonprofit status? Why wouldn’t you want it! There are so many grants and funding possibilities when you are linked to another nonprofit. You still have control over the performance or research storytelling project. You will be the one to complete the final report to the organization awarding you the grant.

Once upon a time, Story Crossroads was an idea rather than an entity. During the first couple years, we had to borrow nonprofit status. We did not want to be in that limbo world forever and always planned to be our own nonprofit. Thus…since April 7, 2017, we became a full-fledged 501(c)(3) nonprofit that took what seemed forever to earn along with sending in 200+ pages to the IRS (26-page application, tons of pages for supplemental to the application, the rest as examples of our impact with the community). There is a hefty price–financially and time-wise–in the beginning to receive that nonprofit status. Many people and organizations avoid even getting to that status.

Crazy enough, our nonprofit status was approved on December 8, 2018 but it backdates to when your organization became “official” through the state. For us, that would be the state of Utah.

Whether you are an individual or organization, make sure you have a business license. It is only $10/year in Utah though can vary from state to state.

As a reward for that hard work, qualified nonprofits do not have to pay taxes and have the simplest reporting each year called 990-EZ, which is nicknamed the “postcard” because it is that short in information to send back. You can also purchase most supplies being tax exempt. Perhaps this motivates you to become nonprofit. Yet, in the meantime, borrow!

Never plan on being nonprofit? No problem. Continue in that sponsored membership program as long as you are diligent in your final reports to those grants and continue to have authorization through the National Storytelling Network.

By the way, this has nothing to do with the sponsored membership program, but there is something wonderful housed under the umbrella of the National Storytelling Network due to the efforts of Artists Standing Strong Together – see on Facebook or go to the website. It is the Storyteller Relief Fund that helps any story artist that is having a hard time during COVID-19. You can donate or apply to this fund.

So, are you a dues-paying member of the National Storytelling Network?

Were you one but accidentally forgot to renew? First time to storytelling?

Today is that time. Go here for the opportunity to be connected and be part of the National Storytelling Network.

Want to discover more beyond this 5-part Blog Series? Check out the the next Story Crossroads adventure on Saturday, June 20, 2020 from 9:00am-10:30am MDT from your computer- The Big Why Panel: Historical Storytelling meets Humanities.

See our 5-video playlist from the Story Crossroads Spectacular by clicking here.