Tell Your Story Walking is a collection of creative work by Syracuse University honors students and alumni, curated by current honors students.
We connect our community by providing a platform for creative nonfiction, visual art, and multimedia to give a voice to individual experiences and perspectives.
Tell Your Story Walking is published annually on this website and as a print magazine. Read more below about the project (and its title).
Submissions for the 2022 edition are open now! Deadline September 25.
Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers
About Tell Your Story Walking
A note to those who may be wondering why this website and magazine is called Tell Your Story Walking.
Back in 2011, I introduced a creative nonfiction writing course in SU’s Honors Program in which students write stories about their lives—their childhoods, families, hometowns, travels, and more.
I called the course Tell Your Story Walking, after a song by Deb Talan. (As it happens, she in turn adopted this phrase from another source—Jonathan Lethem’s detective novel Motherless Brooklyn.)
I chose this title for my class because Tell Your Story Walking, to me, captures a vital truth about writing or any creative work: the best writing is about exploring, searching for understanding…finding the story. A great story is not a summary or recap—it’s a journey of discovery, for both the author and the reader. It’s not stationary; we are walking through experiences as they unfold, and reckoning with what they mean.
Over the years the Tell Your Story Walking course has inspired some great writing—vivid, thoughtful, and heartfelt, with the clear ring of personal truth. These stories sparked a conversation within the Honors Program about how this work deserved an audience beyond our classroom, in the broader campus community and beyond. Which is why we created the Tell Your Story Walking magazine and website.
In 2020, a group of students edited and produced all the content for an inaugural edition through a new honors course. Right away they expanded the project beyond its roots in creative nonfiction writing, to encompass visual art, multimedia, and more.
In 2021 came a second edition of Tell Your Story Walking, and as I write a new group of students is at work on the third edition, putting their own stamp on this publication—and continuing the good work of sharing the diverse voices and stories of this community.
—Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers
Read more about the debut 2020 collection in this Daily Orange story.