Our Blog

Empowering Storytellers

I want to give new storytellers the tools to tell stories drawing multiple creative dimensions together, and not just words or film or music or paint.


Sure it’s hard if you come at it retrospectively, as the imagination-free publisher, trying to shoehorn some interactive gimmicks around an existing story conceived as a ‘word story’ only. But Beyond the Story wants to empower the next wave of storytellers to embrace new structuring and delivery mechanisms from conception to publication.


There is an old point around resistance through the preconception that augmenting the words destroys the reader’s room to apply imagination. That’s a widely held attitude. To this day there are many people who resist illustrations in books for the same reason. But it’s mixing up a rose-tinted view of pages of words with the fact that some publishers have never delivered anything else anyway because they have – rather, had – a nice little earner thank you very much. We are a part of the evolution of long form storytelling which gives great storytellers the chance to tell their stories in more than just words. It’s about extending their craft, their options. About meeting new ‘readers’ on the digital battleground.


I want to temper what I say with ‘there will always be the words-only novel’, to make myself sound reasonable to publishers, but to be honest I’m not sure it holds true anymore. Even in leisure time we’re seeing consumers actively mining their way through media, evaluating and coordinating information from diverse sources. It strikes me that reading a novel alone could become a symbol: of an active stance of resistance to change, or a signifier of how far you are from the digital poverty border. Technology is changing how we engage with media, and this has to include storytelling in all its forms.


Kirk Bowe, Chief Creative Officer