All posts by Scott Prewitt

Scott Prewitt

About Scott Prewitt

My Name is Scott Prewitt. I am a cultural enthusiast hell bent on both enhancing and sharing passionate experiences. I aim to accomplish this through multimedia content creation. I am a passionate musician, reader and writer.

A Multitude of Drops

As I write this, I’m sitting in my house watching the rain fall outside. The setting sun is peeking out from behind the clouds, dramatically illuminating thousands of water droplets, each a perfect diamond as it falls to the earth. The effect fades as the sun recedes.

Soon I’ll be watching the same sun, but it won’t be setting. At all.

It’s an odd thing, living in time and space. One minute, you’re here, the next minute, you’re there.

One week, I’m unpacking my first house in Omaha.

House
The house I moved into last weekend.

The next week I’m shooting footage for a documentary in Bethel, Alaska.

Part of the crew preparing for the shoot in Bethel.
Part of the crew preparing for the shoot in Bethel.

Though many assert that we are each a pillar of individuality, born with unchanging, innate traits, it seems that the contrary is true. Our identities, to a great extent, reflect the time and space we inhabit.

One minute, I’m this person, the next minute, as Pink Floyd would put it, I’m “shorter of breath and one day closer to death.”

We are reminded of the passing of time and its effect on our identity in nearly every moment. We can track this simply by looking at ourselves at different ages. When I was 6, I wanted to grow up to be a paleontologist. Now, I don’t want to grow up, but I do want to be a journalist.

What’s less consistent is the passing of space.

We tend to spend the majority of our time in the same spaces, fabricating and contextualizing our identities according to these familiar places. I know I, for one, rarely get to watch myself change while passing from one space to another. I get caught in the monotony of daily routine, doing the same things in the same places.

Once in a while, though, things change.

These events (For me they were things like the first day of kindergarten, moving to Springfield, the first day of high school, moving to Omaha, etc…) are like giant billboards that read, “Hey you. Yes, you. Life is about to change, so buckle up.”

This trip to Alaska is staring me in the face, so I’m buckling up. I’m stepping out of my bubble on a quest for authentic experience and exposure.

My hope is that going to Bethel, a place radically different from that of my every-day-life, will instigate change in me for the better.  A part of the world that has not yet penetrated my consciousness might do just that. And hopefully, when that happens, I can expand my conception of the world. I’ll find out just a little bit more about how I and others fit into what people call “the big picture.” I’m not sure what “the big picture” is, but every time I experience something new, the picture gets a little more clear.

David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas, has one of my favorite endings of any story. “Your life will have amounted to no more than a single drop in a limitless Ocean,” claims the protagonist’s father-in-law. To which the protagonist responds, “Yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?”

How big is the ocean? Which drop am I? Will I fall in front of the setting sun, or the one that never sets?

Telling Stories

Photo from Flickr.com, taken by Paul Ife Horne and appeared in 'Concord, a link with the past'.
Photo from Flickr.com, taken by Paul Ife Horne and appeared in ‘Concord, a link with the past’.

I want to be a storyteller.

The storyteller holds a sacred vocation. As far back as 40,000 years ago, storytellers have been bearing witness to the events of their times and places. In Mesopotamia, they spread the legend of their greatest king in The Epic of Gilgamesh. In ancient Greece, Homer showed the traits of the ideal Greek man in The Odyssey. In early twentieth century United States, Muckrakers exposed crime, corruption and injustice through investigative journalism. These and all other storytellers are responsible for shaping the way people understand and interact with the world.

Storytelling is time and space sensitive. A story’s medium panders to it’s audience. Just as Homer had to twist his tales with a largely oral audience in mind, so I must create content for an audience steeped in a multimedia environment. Media in the modern day have converged. The lines differentiating print journalism from broadcast journalism, and even journalism as a whole from English and communications studies, have blurred. With the advent of computers and the internet, we have entered into a storytelling environment where different platforms and media become juxtaposed in telling a single story. This has serious implications for the future of storytelling.

Stories exist in the world independent of storytellers. As a storyteller, I am a conduit through which a story flows. I have to ask how a story may best reach its audience. The convergent nature of modern media means the answer to this question is no longer confined to a single medium. Narratives may be spun using a multitude of platforms. Short form documentaries, slideshows, text, audio clips, and more may all contribute to a single narrative.

Backpack Journalism allows the individual storyteller to leverage this convergence. With just the equipment in one’s backpack, a storyteller can record, review and edit any kind of content a story calls for. This liberates the storyteller to roam the land, bearing witness the world and telling stories however they ought to be told.

This is why I have chosen Backpack Journalism. Through it I will become a more effective, independent storyteller who can individually create high quality, convergent content that serves the needs of the story and its audience.

Till next time,

-Scott