英会話・英語 アミック How do you tell a good story?
Each story we hear or read has a similar structure: a beginning – introducing the characters and setting; a middle – what the characters were doing and why, this usually includes a climatic and exciting event; finally an end – how the characters achieved their goal and any consequences of that. This format does not however, guarantee a good story – it is what is happening in our brain that determines whether we perceive the story as good, bad or indifferent.
So what’s going on behind the eyes? Firstly, there is a process called neural coupling taking place. This process activates areas in the brain which allow the listener, or reader, to associate the story to their own ideas and experiences. Secondly, the process of mirroring comes into effect, research shows that listeners and readers experience similar brain activity to the writer or narrator. This can determine the popularity of the story. Thirdly, the brain releases a hormone called dopamine when it experiences an emotionally charged event (remember the climatic and exciting event?). Dopamine allows people to recall more easily and with greater accuracy. Finally, the extent of cortex activities also have an major impact on a story, when we process facts two areas of the brain are activated, whereas a well told story engages many additional areas such as the motor cortex, sensory cortex and frontal cortex. This gives us more connections with the story and more avenues in order to recall in greater detail.