"Year of the Adopted Family" book release

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Julie Barnson: Buddy for "Forsaken Brother"

Three stories are part of the "Family Famine: Hunger for Love" and I wanted a different buddy per story.

I scheduled every Tuesday from 1o:00am to Noon to be "Forsaken Brother" Day with story buddy Julie Barnson. (Yet this time went to almost 1:00pm.)

As was done with story buddy Holly Robison for "The Gardener's Wife", Julie read the "Forsaken Brother" story aloud. Again, this allowed me to reflect on the images in the story so that our session would be more productive.

We came up with questions that may or may not be answered during the actual performance. If I am familiar with these questions and have answers, then it is enough to come across in the telling.

I brought my whiteboard and here were some results:

  • What is it like for the sister to run the household, which is usually thought of as the mother's role?
  • Why is the lodge so far away? Symbolic reasons? Farther from water? Illness to to keep away from the village, especially as the father and mother eventually die?
  • Was the illness due to the Europeans/White Man settling in the area with such things as cholera or tuberculosis?
  • What kind of illness does the youngest brother have as he was not completely helpless to go after food in the middle of the woods during winter? Polio? Small pox? (Leaves some people crippled but not helpless)
  • What is the Ojibwa perception of werewolves, as this does come up in Native American lore? What of the transformation from human to animal how is it perceived?
  • Why was the sister not there when the transformation of the youngest brother occurred?
  • Why do I love to have the brother's eyes remind the sister of the father's eyes? Is it because it represents family and when she no longer sees anything, she is wanting a family of her own?
  • Is leaving the lodge to search for her brother an excuse to leave the sickly brother?
  • What personal stories do I have that reflect promises broken? Transformation among my brother or sister?
The image below is the original outline for "Forsaken Brother":

This is only the beginning of a wondrous journey for "Forsaken Brother". Feel free to follow the process.

Until we tell again,

Rachel Hedman
Professional Storyteller
Former Co-Chair of Youth, Educators, and Storytellers Alliance (2005-2008)
Tel: (801) 870-5799
Email: info@rachelhedman.com
Performance Blog: http://familyfamine.blogspot.com
Other places to find me: Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, LinkedIn, Professional Storyteller

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