Hugh provides stories for audiences between ages 3-11. Stories that Storynory publish are both original and existing popular fables.
This is a great way to get kids to utilize their imagination instead of having them watch the television. I love the concept of audio stories, and that Hugh makes it accessible to everyone. I also thought it was interesting that he does not think about morals with the stories.
Enjoy the episode with Hugh from StoryNory.
About Hugh. Hugh was a journalist for many years before working for BBC radio. After quite some time in journalism, Hugh wanted to do something different, so he called up a friend, Matthew Lynn - also a journalist, to setup their own business. They started off as consultants for blogs as well as consultants on how to interact in social media even before the term “social media” was common to everyone and they called their company Blog Relations.
Podcasting is already starting to take off, so they have to come up with an idea that would last, especially that podcasting was bigger in the US than in the UK. His partner, Matthew then thought of them creating children stories since his kids always listens to audio books. Late 2005 is when they launched their first children story podcast called Storynory.
They then shifted from writing about economics and business to writing children’s stories. Storynory was accepted in the social media world better than Blog Relations.
Matthew is no longer involved with Storynory, but for Hugh he found that this is his passion – writing children’s stories. From there they’ve had several actors involved to make the story more alive every time the children listen to it.
The Three Dogs. Hugh then started to talk about the “Three Dogs”, which he considers as a traditional story that he adapted as it’s a mixture of different stories from around the world.
It’s all about the dragon killed by George, who is the main character in the story, whereas the coachman tried to steal all the credit from killing it. Hugh put his spin on the story by making George more naïve than the original story. An example would be when George asked her sister to choose between their house and the three sheep. His sister chose the house, he simply gave his sister her wish, got the 3 sheep and took off. George travelled and that’s where the story unraveled where he met the coachman and killed the dragon.
The Three Dogs is one of the all-time favorite stories from their audio books. Hugh talks more about reading and researching the different versions of the story. He got inspired by the older version, put his own words into writing, added the Three Dogs on their audio books compilation.
Storynory. Their books cater to kids from ages 3-11. Most of their books are designed in a language that kids ages 6 and up would appreciate. Their audio books are listened to by schools, where myths are their number one choice as it’s more educational for the group of kids they are teaching. Asians favor more the classic fairytales, while the kids who visit their website enjoys their originals as they find it more fun and modern.
Hugh also talks about their newer adaptions with characters that are popular to kids and stories they really love - all available on their website – Bertie, Astropup, The Witch Who Was Frightened of Halloween, and a lot more.
With the competition in this industry, the group makes sure that they have all the music & sound effects to ensure the podcasts are enjoyable to kids. Hugh even admits to recording his own dog’s barks, and that his recorder is always with him so he can record sounds they might need for their stories - like ducks quacking, cars passing by, sounds of when kids are playing football, etc.
With the vast audience of Storynory, Hugh and the team also makes sure the comments are moderate. While for the kids’ privacy, they are not asked to leave an email address when putting on their comments, they are anonymous to everyone, but they can put on their nicknames.
[caption id="attachment_291" align="aligncenter" width="635"] Jana Elizabeth (does a lot for Storynory, including music and editing the stories) with Richard Scott working together on Storynory.[/caption]
Creative collaboration. Being creative is what makes Hugh happy. He enjoys putting a spin on stories, creating songs for their audio, collaborating with actors – as how he puts it, “..you hear it completely different from them”, to the gratification they get from the positive, whereas some even go as far as sing their stories.
This industry he admits is challenging – from the websites visitors, paying the actors and musicians, advertising, laws which add more complication - but he makes sure he makes ends meet. Collaborative creative process is rewarding for him especially that you get connected with people from all around the world.
Watch out. Periodically, Storynory has writing competition. After receiving hundreds of entries they read out the 3 best. This September, Storynory would have another competition for eager writers who wants to share their own stories!!!
telephone: +44 7941 190740