Insincerity: The third deadly sin of storytelling

What's the universal element of your story?
What’s the universal element of your story?

The wolf in sheep’s clothing: that’s the essence of the sin of insincerity. Don’t try to be something that you’re not, said Jonah Sachs in “Winning the Story Wars.” Don’t try to please your audience so much that you lose your core identity.

While Sachs doesn’t use the word “authenticity,” he’s talking about what makes your story authentic. What are the values or the moral of the story you’d like to tell? How does that relate to your audience as human beings, not as a targeted demographic?

“Great stories are universal because at their core, humans have more in common with each other than the pseudo-science of demographic slicing has led us to believe,” Sachs said.

He points to the example of Pixar. They are aiming to tell stories that connect with a human audience. Stories that are creative, inspired by core values that everyone can relate to, not just kids. Maybe that’s why I have found myself on the edge of my seat more than once in the “Toy Story ” movies.