The Four Types of Storytellers + A Quiz to Determine Your Storyteller Type!

Hello writer!

First things first, how are you? How’s the writing life treating you? I’m currently in the beginning stages of revising my WIP – currently titled Life by the Stars. And let me tell you: right now, it feels like my novel is revising me instead of the other way around. Instead of me getting my novel into prime shape, it’s making me question everything. Why am I writing this? Why are these characters so important to me? And why do I struggle so much with revision?

In an attempt to understand my writing weaknesses and strengths, I’ve developed a theory of sorts. You see, my writing process has always been pretty much the same. First, a character pops into my head. Without much effort, without much thought, the character is suddenly real to me. They’re living and breathing, with a unique voice, even if they haven’t spoken a word. Writing, for me, is a process of finding a story for my characters; a story that makes them as real to a potential reader as they are to me, a story that makes these characters matter. The heart of all my stories is the same: character.

However, I’ve been around enough writers to know that this isn’t true for everyone. Each writer is different, and each different story element speaks to them in a different way. In this post, I’ll be sharing what I think of as The Four Types of Storytellers. But, before we start discussing the different types and what they mean, I’d love for you to take this quick quiz to determine your Storyteller Type!

Take The Four Types of Storytellers Quiz!

(if the quiz isn’t popping up here, follow this link to take The Four Types of Storytellers Quiz!)
Easiest quiz you ever took, huh? If you find that your quiz results don’t match what you know in your heart to be your Storyteller Type, then forget the quiz! Go with your gut, because I’m no a quizmaster. Now, let’s go more in depth on The Four Types of Storytellers and what they mean for writers.


The Four Types of Storytellers

I’m starting with the Character Crew because it happens to be my Storyteller Type. If you’re part of the Character Crew, you’re a natural character storyteller. Your stories will hold characters that are more real, more complex, and more relatable than any other Storyteller Type. You might struggle a bit with plot, as any challenge your characters face have to bring out their unique personalities, strengths, and weaknesses. But, your stories will connect with readers on a deeply personal level; after reading your stories, your reader will feel understood.

What you’re awesome at:

  • Emotion
  • Character Development
  • Dialogue
  • Internal Conflict
  • Creating characters that look, sound, and feel real

What you might struggle with:

  • Finding a plot that’s good enough for your awesome characters
  • Creating a story line that will keep readers interested
  • Answering the big question of why your story matters
  • Making your characters seem as real to your readers as they are to you

The Four Types of Storytellers

If your Storyteller Type is The Plot People, consider me officially jealous. For The Plot People, creating conflict is second nature. If you’re one of the Plot People, you’re a natural plot storyteller. Anytime you tell a story, even conversationally, there’s a strong beginning, middle, and end that keeps listeners interested. Your stories have the potential to intrigue your readers, and keep them turning pages late into the night. It might be difficult for you to create relatable characters or fill in the more mundane details of your story, but your writing always has momentum.

What you’re awesome at:

  • Creating conflict
  • Keeping your story moving forward
  • Creating suspense
  • Engaging readers from beginning to end

What you might struggle with:

  • Developing characters that are up to the challenge of living out your plot
  • Exposition
  • Figuring out what makes your story meaningful

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


The Four Types of Storytellers

If your Storyteller Type is The Language Lover, you know that a rose by any other name is not as sweet. The Language Lover’s writing is full of imagery and figurative language and words so beautiful that readers feel like they’re in the world of the story. If you’re a Language Lover, chances are your story reveals itself to you in pictures and scents and sounds. You’re a natural language storyteller, and the way the story is told is sometimes more important than the story itself. Although you may face difficulty in creating interesting characters and decent plots, when you put your mind to it, your writing is a work of art.

What you’re awesome at:

  • Figurative Language
  • Exposition
  • All the tiny details that make your story unique
  • Sensory information

What you might struggle with:

  • Putting the images in your head into words
  • Developing characters
  • Building a plot arc
  • Stringing your images and scenes together in a way that creates meaning

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


The Four Types of Storytellers

Oh hey, Theme Team. If your Storyteller Type is The Theme Team, you are special. Because you are a natural theme storyteller, your stories are driven by a powerful, meaningful, thought-provoking question that has the potential to change the way people think. When you set out to tell a story, your starting place might only be “I want to tell a story about ______.” But, it’s that clarity and central force that makes your story interesting and important. Figuring out how to best communicate the heart behind your story is incredibly difficult, but when accomplished, you’ll have a story that impacts readers like no other.

What you’re awesome at:

  • Uniting big-picture questions with small-scale details
  • Making your readers question the way they think or feel
  • Always knowing the heart behind your story, and why it’s important to tell

What you might struggle with:

  • Finding the characters, plot, and voice that will present the central question of your story in the perfect light
  • Determining how much to share of how you feel, and how much to leave up to the reader

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


You might be wondering, “What’s the point of all this?” or “Why does my Storyteller Type matter?” Understanding your Storyteller Type is key to figuring out your strengths and weaknesses as a writer. It’s also important to remember that just because you struggle with certain parts of writing or developing a story, you are uniquely gifted in your own way.

I wanted to write this post because, in a flurry of doubt yesterday, I thought, “Well, I’ve always been a bad storyteller.” But, this simply isn’t true. I quickly changed my thinking. My stories may not keep people on the edge of their seat, or include some profound thinking on major issues, but my stories can make people laugh or cry or smile. And isn’t that just as important?

As writers, we have our own unique strengths, as captured in our Storyteller Type. But, the truth is, all writers have to become all the storyteller types to create a story that is as full and real and beautiful as we want it to be. Your Storyteller Type is your natural storytelling heart, but you have to step into the shoes of the other types to challenge yourself, and write a story that works as a whole.

I hope this post and quiz has helped you to understand yourself as a writer just a little better. Knowing your Storyteller Type isn’t going to magically make you a better writer, but I hope it makes you more confident in your strengths, and encourages you to tackle your weaknesses head-on.

Keep writing, keep learning, keep growing.

P.S. If you liked this post, you might be interested in my post The Two Types of Writers and Why It Matters

What’s your Storyteller Type? Do you think there are any Types of Storytellers that I missed? Let me know in the comments below! 


Have you ever wondered what your storytelling superpower is? Discover your Storyteller Type with this quiz and post on the Four Types of Storytellers! Find you writing strengths and weaknesses, and become the Storytelling Superhero you're meant to be!

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6 Comments

  1. Great quiz. As a published author, I feel you targeted the qualities-type quiz accurately. Thank you for always having interesting things to read/do on your blog.

    • I’m so glad you think it’s accurate! Of course, the quiz is just for fun, and your Storyteller Type can be a mix of all four. Thanks for reading!
      xo, Haley

  2. This is an awesome post. I’m part of the Character Crew, too. I’m looking forward to more writing posts! I’m a fairly new reader, by the way.

    • Thank you so much Amy! I’m happy to have another writer in the Character Crew 🙂 I’ve definitely strayed a bit from writing posts the past couple of months, but I’m planning to have a lot more in the future. Thanks for reading!
      xo, Haley

    • Thank you so much, Kathryn! I had a lot of fun putting together this post and thinking about the different types of storytellers. Thanks for commenting!
      xo, Haley

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