Grab Attention Like Dr. Seuss …
by Erik K. Johnson
Grab Attention Like Dr. Suess
American children’s author Dr. Seuss (Theodor “Ted” Suess Geisel) was more interested in telling a good story than he was in telling a true story. He often exaggerated. He always used wonderful, colorful words.
The good story approach is even described In his biography at www.Seussville.com. Dr. Suess and his wife were unable to have children.
“To silence friends who bragged about their own children, Ted liked to boast of the achievements of their imaginary daughter, Chrysanthemum-Pearl. … He included her on Christmas cards, along with Norval, Wally, Wickersham, Miggles, Boo-Boo, Thnud, and other purely fictional children. For a photograph used on one year’s Christmas card, Geisel even invited in half a dozen neighborhood kids to pose as his and Helen’s children. The card reads, ‘All of us over at Our House / Wish all of you over at / Your House / A very Merry Christmas,’ and is signed ‘Helen and Ted Geisel and the kiddies.’”
Part of the magic that was Seuss was created by the words he used. Oftentimes, he used words he created himself, like whisper-ma-phone, fiffer-feffer-feff, schloppity-schlopp. His words were memorable and unique. His words have sounds that catch your attention.
If you want to catch the attention of your audience, use great words like Dr. Seuss. You don’t need to create your own vocabulary. Simply use words that stir emotion. Your words do not need to be long, flamboyant words. They simply need to be emotional.
Betraying. Jubilant. Downtrodden. Passionate. Unmovable. Use words that paint pictures.
Great storytellers use delightful details created by fabulous words.
Use delightful details. “It was a muggy, hot lunchtime. We had ducked into the cool, dark shade of the woods where the sun was barely visible through the dense leaves. My eyes hadn’t yet adjusted to the leave-covered path when I lost my footing near the edge of an embankment. I ended up landing on my hip and rolling head-over-feet down the fairly steep, 10-foot drop where I promptly landed on my butt in the muddy mess below. My legs were completely covered in mud as if I had been rolling in it for hours.”
With the delightful details of that story, you can almost feel yourself in the woods. You can see the muddy mess in your mind. You can smell the thick, wooded area. Details help your listener experience the story rather than just hearing it.
Capture the attention of your listener by putting your listener in the moment. Always include delightful details in your story. Use fabulous words that paint pictures. Grab attention like Dr. Seuss.
I’d love to help you with your podcast. Post any questions or comments you might have, or e-mail me at Erik@PodcastTalentCoach.com. You can also get tools to help you create great content at www.PodcastTalentCoach.com. Let’s turn your information into engaging entertainment.