From the early beginnings, storytelling has been an important tool for telling a story, storytelling has been used in all cultures to preserve stories through generations.
Through storytellers, the history of culture was handed down from generation to generation. To preserve stories told by storytellers, technology has formed the basis of preserving history, from the early days of cave carvings, the Vikings runestones, the invention of pen and paper to modern days digital storytelling.
In early storytelling, the storyteller combined stories, poetry, music, and dance, and in modern time storytellers became entertainers, educators, and historians for a community.
With the introduction of computers, a new form of storytelling has emerged what we call digital storytelling. In today’s world, anyone can be a storyteller, as we all have a story to tell and now we have the tools to do so.
This article is not about the art of storytelling it’s all about how you can use WordPress and WordPress Plugins to create your own storytelling platform. So, let’s get started with how to build a storytelling platform using WordPress.
Storytelling with WordPress
I will make the assumption that you are familiar with WordPress and may already have a WordPress site, I will focus on what plugins to use and how to set them up.
Let’s take a look at the plugins I used
I’m using the Aesop Story Engine to combine photographs, video, maps, timelines, animation, sound, music, and text to create a story out of my traveling experiences by bike. As my theme did not support the Aesop Story Engine feature, I needed to add theme support to the theme, I opted instead for the Code Snippets plugin to add the following code for Aesop Story Engine.
How to use Aesop Story Engine
when you click on “Add Components” you get these options.
Just add the components that you require for the story that you want to tell, there are a few setups that you need to do to use some of the components of Aesop Story Engine.
The Gallery feature is not part of the WordPress media/gallery feature, you have a new post type in your menu and you need to create the galleries before you can insert them.
The Map feature requires you to have an account with Mapbox, and create a basic map and then you have to add the Mapbox Map ID to your theme – in Appearance -> Customize.
That is about it to get started telling an interactive story, here are some of the stories I have created:
In these stories, I have used the Map feature to allow the readers to follow on a map where my text match a location I traveled past. I provide information about places, with the intention of opening up curious minds amongst my readers to visit the places I have a visitor to actually do the same trip I did.
You have a story in you, so start telling it – and if you have comments – there is a box below where you can comment on this article. If you want to know more feel free to contact me.