Imagine standing in a church pulpit overlooking the coffin of a close friend and former patient, with a church full of mourners, while attempting to fulfill her last request by telling stories. Try to picture a day which starts by telling stories to a class of first graders, followed by treating homebound physical therapy patients (some of which include: a terminally ill seven year old; a ninety-three year old stroke victim who lives alone; and a mother of four who goes into a comma and has to be sent to the emergency room) and ending the day by participating in a workshop for incarcerated individuals in one of the local prisons. These are examples of the experiences which THE REAL STORYTELLER has used to bring James W. Graham, Jr. to the present point in which he calls himself a storyteller.
As a husband, father of two, a former physical therapist and former Sunday school teacher, James is now pursuing a career in special education. He feels The CREATOR shaped his life into that of a storyteller by including: his now deceased father, who fostered a love of storytelling during the much remembered bed-time stories; his mother, a former teacher; his sister a dancer who introduced James to his storytelling mentors, Jamal Koram and Opalanga Pugh as well as to African culture; and his wife and kids who were often forced to lend an ear to his storytelling.
In 1992, what started with reading to his children at night has taken the form of delivering the message in churches, performing in parks, auditoriums, school classrooms, detention centers and prisons. With each experience James is the first to admit he received as much or more than THE CREATOR gave, when James was used as a storyteller.
It is with the preceding in mind that one can better understand the genesis of STORIES FROM THE STORYTELLER.