Introduction to Latest Book

Minnesota Memories 7 by Joan Claire Graham & 44 Friends

Before movies, radio, television, and the Internet, people spent millenniums perfecting the art of storytelling. The world’s oldest form of entertainment owes its longevity to its simplicity and to the timeless appeal of a well-told story. Unlike news reporters who hit readers in the first paragraph with all they really need to know, a storyteller unfolds events like a screenplay with an establishing shot, story exposition, ascending action, conflict, climax, and resolution.

As I travel around Minnesota, talking to people and inviting them to send me their best true stories to share with the world in the Minnesota Memories book series,

I am always impressed by their knowledge, their instinctive need to share what they know, and their innate ability to choose a storytelling style that will evoke a response from their intended audience, whether that response is laughter, understanding, sympathy, empathy, nostalgia, or amazement at unusual things that really happen.

Hollywood screenwriters have spent thousands of highly-paid hours inventing some crazy Minnesota stories and characters. Rose of The “Golden Girls” was the stupid one, Jerry Lundegaard in “Fargo” was a bungling crook, and Ted Baxter in “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” demonstrated how inept a newsman could be-if he was broadcasting from Minneapolis. When I moved away to other states and told people I was from Minnesota, they looked sympathetic and started talking slower. Convincing them to ignore those media-made stereotypes and believe that Minnesota people are actually intelligent, hard-working, good-humored, highly educated, creative, and resourceful people was difficult.

So I decided to give genuine Minnesota people, who do such a good job of storytelling, a chance to show the world what we’re really like by writing and publishing their own true stories. These are not Ole and Lena jokes, nor do they contain hot dish lore or the phrase “you betcha.” Minnesota Memories are real stories by real Minnesota people, and reading them is just a lot more fun than a person ought to be able to have. If this is your first Minnesota Memories volume, welcome aboard, and if you like this book, check out the six that preceded it.”

– Joan Claire Graham, Purveyor of Memories

Do you know someone from Minnesota?  These books make great gifts!