copyright © Roger Jenkins Pte Ltd  designed with Webplus8   | feedback

copyright © Roger Jenkins Pte Ltd  designed with Webplus8   | feedback

Here are text versions of some of my favourite stories.  They are not necessarily the version as you may have heard me tell a particular story.   

I don’t memorise stories by rote, but tell them off the top of my head and the bottom of my heart (as Canadian teller Max Tell inspired me to do.)  It’s up to you to decide how to tell a story in a way that suits you.

Writing out a tale that’s to be told orally is a tricky thing - finding the balance between a literary and an oral style.  

There’s often a lot of repetition and redundancy in a folktale, which works wonderfully in the telling, but gets tiresome to read and reread on the page. Written versions need to supply the details which the teller can provide through gesture, facial expression or intonation. For example, writers use lots of synonyms for said (pleaded, demanded, sighed, whispered, insisted) but tellers convey that through the way they say the dialogue.   It’s similar to a good picture book: you can’t just read the story to your child without sharing the pictures, as the text isn’t complete (or sufficient) without them.

So if you’re looking to re-tell these stories yourself - and please do so, by all means! - you need to choose

In the links section I’ve listed my go-to books and websites which may help you find other versions of these stories - or stories you’re looking to tell.

All traditional stories are in the public domain, so you don’t have to worry about copyright. Since you’ll be re-telling them in your own words, you’ll be making them your own.

As a courtesy, if you tell in public, it’s nice if you share where you heard the story first.

Enquiry