Connection the key to community wellness.
“Effectively, sit back and just listen. Listen to that person.”Miki Issac-Boyd Savvy Scripts Publishing
Miki Isaac-Boyd, Founder and/or “the Boss” of SAVVY SCRIPTS PUBLISHING
Not only does she help writers and artists to tell their stories, Miki is also a copywriter, writer, professional speaker, digital content producer, radio announcer, poet and lyricist. She is a terrible illustrator and singer and so get’s other people to do those parts.
Before opening Savvy Scripts Publishing, Miki wrote for companies all around the world, connecting the soul of their business to the heart of the customer. Yep, she was sort of a wordy match-maker.
“I have spent my career, helping businesses to tell their story. I’m thrilled and proud to be able to help people to now get their stories out of their heads, and into their very own books.”
In her “spare time” (lol), Miki enjoys spending time exploring the world with her two well-behaved children and mildly-behaved partner.
Just record and listen sometimes is the best thing you can do!
Leanne Simpson: And we’re live and welcome to Tribe Talk on this gorgeous, absolutely wonderful day in paradise city in Mackay. I’d like to welcome to the show today, Nikki Isaac-Boyd, and she’s from Savvy Scripts Publishing. Welcome to the program.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd Hello. So exciting to be here. Thank you so much for inviting me onto your amazing program.
Leanne Simpson: You’re here to talk today about connecting through our stories. So, we’ve been chatting over the previous shows about how to connect with people, because it leads to a great community wellness if people connect and join in, and we talked to Frank Cowell from the Shed Happens Mackay, and he talks about asking someone, “What was it like when you were growing up? Where was it that you grow up?” and things like that. And then it made me think about, well, once you started asking that question, then you might say, “Wow, these are really great stories. What can you do about it?”
Leanne Simpson: But how important is … What is connection and how important is it to you?
Nikki Isaac-Boyd I think connection is absolutely paramount. And for us, it’s connecting within generations or between generations, and connecting with our past, connecting with our present, and also connecting to their future. You’re connecting to the future. So for us, it’s about recording the stories and memories and experiences of ordinary people. Listening to them and hearing their stories and finding out what happened in their lives, and sometimes you have a greater understanding of that person once you understand what they went through and what their experiences were, and it might actually help you to understand what’s going on in your world as well.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd So yeah. For us, it’s really big and we’re really focused on creating that connection through asking those questions and recording those stories of people
Leanne Simpson: When you connect with someone through those asking of questions, sometimes we discover some really interesting things that we didn’t even know about people. I know as being a mother, I am sure that my daughters think that I’ve done very little because I’m very hard on them when they were partying and they were going out like this and they must have thought, “Mom doesn’t do anything.” And now that I have a granddaughter, they started … Things have come up in conversation and they’re actually surprised. The things and the adventures. So, how often do you come across when you start to work with families the surprise that people get from finding out each other’s stories?
Nikki Isaac-Boyd It happens all the time. My favourite one actually happened last year. It was a mother in her 90s who was doing a story. We were talking with her. And in fact, her children who were in their 60s and 70s, and we were talking to her first about her stories. And she said, “My children were incredible. They were the best behaved children you could ever have. They were so lovely.” And all of these … Just the perfect, perfect children. And she spoke for an hour and a half and we had this really lovely idea of her and her family. And then one of the children in their 60s got up to tell his story, and the first thing he said was, “remember that time I stole a car?”
Nikki Isaac-Boyd That just completely discredited everything, all the good things that his mother had said. And I love it when that happens. And it happens a lot when people are telling their stories. And sometimes, this happened a couple of weeks ago, where I was talking to a father and his daughter, and he was telling me a story that she’d heard a thousand times before. And then when he told me the story, something was different. And she said, “Oh, I didn’t realize that was a thing.” So, yeah. Really interesting pieces of connection and how we tell our stories. So yeah, it happens all the time.
Leanne Simpson: Well, what I find also interesting is it’s the same two people or three or four people can be in a room, and they can all come up with the different story. So, they could actually be at a certain pace and all have a different story. Have you found that happening?
Nikki Isaac-Boyd Yeah. And I could talk for hours about that concept of truth in stories and connections, where somebody might tell a story about going down to the pub on a Friday night and that’s their story, but their brother or the sister might tell it and they’ll go, “But that’s my story. That happened to me.” “But no, wait, that happened to me.” “What do you mean that happened to you? That happened to me.” So there’s a really interesting story, I think, about connection and truth and stories and all of those things as well, and I always say, “Every single one of you is telling the truth.” So, yeah. And connection is really interesting because it does put us back in those memories and have us replay those events, and I think that’s really important to remember.
Leanne Simpson: Yeah. Well, I remember when I was and the bank back in the 80’s, I’m showing some of my age, but back in the 80’s, we had a lot of bank robberies. So, what they did is we did a lot of training in a standardized [inaudible 00:05:13] and recall. So the idea was you would see colours on side the door so that you could say, “That person was green, yellow, whatever colour height.” Taught this way of being able to recall so that we ended up with the same story, because they’d had so many robberies and every time the police had come in to do the story, there was 20 staff members all giving their own story about it.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd Well, usually I just say … It’s a bit like, “Let’s hear your side of the story and let’s hear your side of the story, let’s hear your side of the story.” And that’s how we kind of print it as well. We’re like, “Here is the first story and then these are the other stories underneath. You take with it what you will.” Because I think the whole point about storytelling is that it is your version of the story.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd And by the way, in my experience, they’ve always been really nice stories. So, we’re not talking about bank robberies or anything like that, but yeah. I think, for us though, the most important part is that we’re opening up that connection between those siblings, between those family members. You’re actually starting the conversation or giving … Holding the space for them to have that conversation to create connection between themselves. And even when we finish writing the books and they get printed, I always say to people, “If you remember something afterwards, write something in the comments. Write something. Actually write through your books and put your notes in it, because you’re also then creating other connections and you’re starting the story with other people.” So they’re not … What we do with books are not this finite end thing. This is part of the story of creating the connection to your past, present, and future within your family.
Leanne Simpson: Yeah. I love … I am writing until you get a book, especially if it’s a book about something like … Because being love and Tai chi, I often get books in different Thai chis, and I’m scribbling in the margins and people get absolutely disgusted about me scribbling in the margins. And I remember I had my book and it was from an author that I then went to sign and I had all these scribbles in margins where I’ve written things. And I took him over to get it signed and it was all … And I thought … As I handed over though, people were looking at me because it was an old … It looked old and tatty because I crinkled and written and I was a bit embarrassed. And I was like, “Oh, sorry, I wrote in the book.” And he said, “No. The best compliment you could give me is that you spent time reading it.”
Leanne Simpson: And I think that also if a family went to that trouble to absolutely write it to then be able to show other generations where people … I put in here, “Uncle Joe, that was the biggest load of rubbish. That’s not what happened. You were mean that day. You’re telling me you were in the hero in this story. You were in the corner crying.” That would be so brilliant to be able to read that type of thing.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd Yeah, absolutely. And I always encourage it. And for us, it is about the story never ends. The story moves and changes and all of those things, and it should. And I love that.
Leanne Simpson: Yeah, so we always ask our guests to bring a couple of takeaway items, some actions that people can do once they’re inspired by our conversation. So people thinking that, “Oh, wow. This sounds like something I want to do. Where do I start?” So share us with a couple of your takeaway items so people can actually put something to action.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd Honestly, the easiest thing that you can do is to get your phone. Honestly, get out your phone. Every single mobile phone should have a dictation software within it. If you don’t … Can’t find it on your phone, you can download some really free dictation software. Honestly, turn it on. You don’t need any fancy equipment or any of those things. I have little lapel mics that I put on our guests, but really, put your phone in front of the person and just press dictate and say, “Tell me your story. Tell me what happened when you were a kid.” And that start … That’s as easy as it gets.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd I know a lot of … When you’re trying to write a memoir or trying to collect the life stories of people, it is a big process. And a lot of people, understandably, get really stuck and they think, “Oh my goodness. I have to write all this down. And I have to write word for word.” No, no, no, no. Get your phone out, press record.. And the other thing too is that, and this is why from our point of view, why it works with us is because we come in as non-partial people. I don’t have any history with you. I don’t understand you or your story. And therefore, then we just listen and we just hear it. And then they have that ability to talk without having to edit themselves. So, when you’re talking to somebody and you’re getting their story, don’t interrupt. Just let them talk. Just let them talk and talk and talk. And if they change the subject, that’s fine. Just let them talk. Honestly, it’s the greatest thing.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd And what’s really funny, we’re talking about connection, is that when people, and I’ll mention this now before I forget later, is that connection also happens for yourself, because when somebody has a … Their story gets out and they’re able to take it out of their head, put it into a book, and read it, they form an even stronger connection of their self and their identity, because they’re going, “Oh, I’m somebody. I did these things. I can’t believe I did all these things.” They forget. And so, there’s this really important personal connection that happens when you write down your stories. So, yeah. Take it away is write your own story and get your phone and just press record and just listen.
Leanne Simpson: Just listen. Yes, because [crosstalk 00:12:15] listen. So, that’s a great way of making a connection with someone is sometimes just to listen, and listen some more, and just be in that moment and not probably edit what they’re saying. Just let the natural word come, and that’s a really, really great way to take some action about connecting with people. That simple thing of asking someone about their story and then taking that opportunity to record them. Of course, ask them if it’s okay before you record them.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd Yeah, yeah.
Leanne Simpson: Yeah. And taking that opportunity to listen to their words. And then from there, you can then move on it and work with Savvy Scripts Publishing with Nikki known as the boss of her organization, but worth it. At least you’ve started somewhere to find people’s stories. So thank you, Nikki Isaac-Boyd from Savvy Scripts Publishing. It’s been awesome just having this little Tribe talk. 15 minutes out of our day. It’s been absolutely brilliant and we’ll catch you next time, everyone. And be well, and don’t forget, connect through your stories. Bye.
Nikki Isaac-Boyd Thanks, bye.