A green dog run in purple dreams

Storytelling by abstraction

I want to tell you a technique to write about a specific experience that you had without mentioning in the context the people involved or particular details that maybe are supposed to be private or confidential.

You can use the technique of abstraction.

In an abstraction, you’re supposed to extract only the meaningful details of your experience to share valuable knowledge or the lessons learned.

This is useful because somebody who will read your article will learn something. But at the same time, you didn’t betray your friends or the people involved with the story, so they wouldn’t feel attacked or disappointed because you have been discreet.

You have to be careful. You have to change the names, change the context. You have to tell the critical concept of what you have learned because all the rest is irrelevant, or maybe you cannot tell it.

Changing the context would help. Set your story in a different setting. Change the time as well.

Instead of yesterday, for example,  it happened five years ago. And instead of your closest cousins, it was a distant friend from the other part of the world. Instead of happening online, it happened in real life. Although we are in pandemic times, and you’re not supposed to meet anybody.

So be careful not to betray any recognizable detail. But in the end, it would be helpful to save usable knowledge that you gained and you think that you cannot share. 

That’s another smart writing prompt to add to your creative toolbox.

A green dog run in purple dreams
A green dog runs on purple dreams
Senior Experience Designer. 25 years designing, developing, writing, speaking, facilitating and teaching.

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