What makes a story have staying power?

I assume that the Sept. 11 attacks will have an effect on people for decades to come. I often associate this effect with the assassination of JFK, another story that keeps evolving.

And now, once again, on the 100th anniversary of its sinking, the Titanic is a story of interest. The ship may still sit on the bottom of the Atlantic, but fascination with it is all around us. New exploration. New narratives. Renewed curiosity.

In this week's writing chat, we talked about what makes a story have staying power, and why stories about 9/11, JFK's assassination and the Titanic are so compelling. We addressed this on the macro level, and talked about how to keep our eyes and ears opened to the daily events that may have great stories hiding inside of them.

You can replay the chat here:

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    Roy Peter Clark

    Roy Peter Clark has taught writing at Poynter to students of all ages since 1979. He has served the Institute as its first full-time faculty member, dean, vice-president, and senior scholar.


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