Stories Make the World: Reflections on Storytelling and the Art of the Documentary
by Stephen Most (Peru 1965-67)
$34.95 (paperback), $150.00 (hardcover)
Since the beginning of human history, stories have helped people make sense of their lives and their world. Today, an understanding of storytelling is invaluable as we seek to orient ourselves within a flood of raw information and an unprecedented variety of supposedly true accounts. In Stories Make the World, award-winning screenwriter Stephen Most offers a captivating, refreshingly heartfelt exploration of how documentary filmmakers and other storytellers come to understand their subjects and cast light on the world through their art. Drawing on the author’s decades of experience behind the scenes of television and film documentaries, this is an indispensable account of the principles and paradoxes that attend the quest to represent reality truthfully.
Stephen Most (Peru 1965-67) is an author, playwright, and documentary scriptwriter. His previous book, River of Renewal: Myth and History in the Klamath Basin, was co-published in 2006 and published by the University of Washington Press and the Oregon Historical Society.
His documentary River of Renewal, which he wrote and produced, was broadcast on PBS stations around the country in 2009, and Nature’s Orchestra, which he also wrote and produced, was broadcast in the PBS series Natural Heroes in 2016.
Other films he has written include Oil On Ice, an hour-long documentary about the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge; The Greatest Good, a history of the U. S. Forest Service; A Land Between Rivers, a documentary history of central California; Green Fire: Aldo Leopold and a Land Ethic for Our Time and The Bridge So Far: A Suspense Story, both of which won “best documentary” Emmys.
Wonders of Nature, which he wrote for the Great Wonders of the World series, also won an Emmy for best special non-fiction program, and Promises, on which he worked as Consulting Writer and Researcher, won Emmys for best documentary and outstanding background analysis and research. Berkeley in the Sixties, which he co-wrote, received an Academy Award nomination.
As a playwright, he is the author of Poe, Medicine Show, Raven’s Seed, Watershed, A Free Country, and Forces of Nature. In addition, Stephen has have written plays for and with the Organic Theatre, the San Francisco Mime Troupe, and the Dell’Arte Players Company.