Likable Narrator: Be the Biggest Asshole in the Story

Likable Narrator: Be the Biggest Asshole in the Story

On this episode, we’re talking about creating a likable narrator. The narrator is the I in the story. It’s YOU. We see this a lot with beginner writers and we probably did this too, and that is tell a story about a time we were the hero. Sad truth: no one wants to hear how great you are. This is true in life too. What people connect to in stories and in life are times when you’re vulnerable. This is counterintuitive because everyone wants to show a good face, but we connect to a narrator who’s willing to admit something ugly. By “ugly” we mean the stuff you don’t want people to know. Stuff like, when you were a jealous bitch. When you lost your moral compass. When you were mean to your kids. The truths you spend most of your days covering up.

To find the ugly in your story, tell the truth, without leaving out all the good shit out. Here are five ways: Dig deep. Admit something you haven’t told anyone. Look at yourself from your partner or kids' or best friend’s point of view. Always be the biggest asshole in your story. Use self deprecation.

Student, Misha Mehrel shows that being a dick is a sure way to be a likable narrator. Misha told a stunning story in our last episode. Student Karen Collazo also shows that even admitting to being a potential thief--because she’s admitting the truth--makes you a likable narrator. Allison Langer also proves to be a likable narrator in a stunningly honest story called Ungrateful Little Piece of Shit.

Announcement: Andrea is teaching How to Tell Your Story as part of CreativeLive’s Writing Week. You can watch live and for free on January 15, 2018 at noon Eastern. If you miss the live stream, catch her 90 minute class any time on CreativeLive.com

Thank you for listening to Writing Class Radio.

Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.

Writing Class Radio is produced by Misha Mehrel, Virginia Lora,  Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com).

If you have a business or a startup and need help telling your story, Andrea will come to your office and teach all your employees how to better articulate why they do what they do. Do it! Stories sell. Allison will come to your retreat and help guests write through their shit so they can live free and happier. Or, hire her to help your high schooler refine his/her college essay.

Visit our musicians page to learn about the talented and generous people who allowed us to use their songs.

There’s more writing class on our website(www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/) and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). You can make writing a daily practice. We have a growing community of listeners who respond to our daily prompts and give feedback to each other. Join the party. Click on Daily Prompts on our website.

If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. $20 for one part or $50 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.

Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!

If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, please go to writingclassradio.com and hit the DONATE button.


On this episode, we’re talking about creating a likable narrator. The narrator is the I in the story. It’s YOU. We see this a lot with beginner writers and we probably did this too, and that is tell a story about a time we were the hero. Sad truth: no one wants to hear how great you are. This is true in life too. What people connect to in stories and in life are times when you’re vulnerable. This is counterintuitive because everyone wants to show a good face, but we connect to a narrator who’s willing to admit something ugly. By “ugly” we mean the stuff you don’t want people to know. Stuff like, when you were a jealous bitch. When you lost your moral compass. When you were mean to your kids. The truths you spend most of your days covering up.

To find the ugly in your story, tell the truth, without leaving out all the good shit out. Here are five ways: Dig deep. Admit something you haven’t told anyone. Look at yourself from your partner or kids' or best friend’s point of view. Always be the biggest asshole in your story. Use self deprecation.

Student, Misha Mehrel shows that being a dick is a sure way to be a likable narrator. Misha told a stunning story in our last episode. Student Karen Collazo also shows that even admitting to being a potential thief--because she’s admitting the truth--makes you a likable narrator. Allison Langer also proves to be a likable narrator in a stunningly honest story called Ungrateful Little Piece of Shit.

Announcement: Andrea is teaching How to Tell Your Story as part of CreativeLive’s Writing Week. You can watch live and for free on January 15, 2018 at noon Eastern. If you miss the live stream, catch her 90 minute class any time on CreativeLive.com

Thank you for listening to Writing Class Radio.

Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are. There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.

Writing Class Radio is produced by Misha Mehrel, Virginia Lora,  Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com).

If you have a business or a startup and need help telling your story, Andrea will come to your office and teach all your employees how to better articulate why they do what they do. Do it! Stories sell. Allison will come to your retreat and help guests write through their shit so they can live free and happier. Or, hire her to help your high schooler refine his/her college essay.

Visit our musicians page to learn about the talented and generous people who allowed us to use their songs.

There’s more writing class on our website(www.writingclassradio.com), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/writingclassradio/) and Twitter (@wrtgclassradio). You can make writing a daily practice. We have a growing community of listeners who respond to our daily prompts and give feedback to each other. Join the party. Click on Daily Prompts on our website.

If you love the lessons you get on each episode, you can get them ALL in one place--our three-part video series. $20 for one part or $50 for the series. Click on Video Classes on our website.

Writing Class Radio is now open to submissions from our listeners. Go to the submissions page on our website for guidelines. We pay!

If you want to be a part of the movement that helps people better understand each other through storytelling, please go to writingclassradio.com and hit the DONATE button.