Ex Fabula presented stories about being stuck in your head

Ex Fabula presented stories about being stuck in your head

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Only five minutes. No props and no notes. Just you, a microphone and your story. Those are the rules for Ex Fabula StorySlams, a monthly live event where community members connect over true, personal stories. Each month has a different theme. This month’s, “In My Mind,” featured stories about mental health, gaslighting, paranoia and assumptions. 

Audience members at StorySlams | Courtesy of Ex Fabula

Before this month’s event, Andrea Ruffier never heard of Ex Fabula and didn’t know what to expect. She found herself compelled to take a risk and sign up to speak.

Ruffier said she battles with anxiety and felt a wave of emotions when it was time for her to go up on stage.

“I was so terrified, my stomach was in knots and I actually felt nauseous,” said Ruffier. “When they finally called my name I was like, ‘Oh God!’ but I got up there and I knew I had something to say. I knew it wasn’t going to be perfect so I just let it all out.”

Public speaking can be scary and can make some people panic. The entire atmosphere was welcoming that even I was considered signing my name up to speak.

For individuals who might have stage fright or not enough material to cover five minutes, there’s a more anonymous way to participate called “Ultra Shorts.” Attendees can write a few lines on a paper and the host will read them out loud.

“When I was 10, in my mind I knew I could be anything, a singer, an astronaut, a doctor. My mom agreed and encouraged me in this belief. It may be why I did become a doctor,” read one.

Gregory Lynn Chambers Jr., who is a past story slammer, said the program gives space for people to be heard. 

“If you feel like nobody would listen, this is a great platform for you,” he said. “Not only does it allow people to see themselves in other people, it builds community. It builds togetherness.”

“I just felt comfortable and that I belonged after hearing other people’s stories,” said Ruffier.

Check out the schedule for upcoming StorySlams here.


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