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Project Recipe: Encouraging the Reluctant Storyteller » Bridget Badoe McQuick

Today we tuck in to talk about a serious challenge to family historians. We invited a performance artist, dancer, and storyteller to share her thoughtful approach to storytellers’ reticence.

My introduction to Bridget Badoe McQuick came through professional genealogist, Emma Cox whom you might know for her Journeys into Genealogy podcast or here on Substack,

. I found Bridget’s podcast episode with Emma inspiring so I was eager to meet her.

Bridget, who also goes by

in her performances, shared several resources with us during today’s program, including:

  • Windrush Day, each 22 June in the UK honors the contributions of migrants to the post-war economy

  • Bruce Castle, the inspiration for the storytelling chair

  • Anansi folklore stories from Africa

  • During her talk, Bridget discussed building a library of topics you might focus on as starter questions to open a conversation. (More about this is in the recipe below.)

    • Childhood

    • Family

    • Travel & migration

    • Career

    • Religion

    • Relationships

    • Children

    • Significant life events

    • Hobbies & interests

    • People/influence 

    • Universal themes

      Project Recipe | Encouraging The Reluctant Storyteller
      2.24MB ∙ PDF file
      This is the recipe Bridget shared to coax reluctant storytellers into telling their own stories. During her talk, she discussed patience and listening and how to facilitate a dialogue to build a connection. This recipe describes her process in more detail. (Prints to A4 paper, or reduced to US/CA Letter-sized paper.)

In her talk, Bridget explores all sorts of interesting strategies for opening conversations and engaging your reluctant storyteller, most importantly, Asking for advice!

I hope you enjoy the program. This is one of a collection of Project Recipes shared by Projectkin members with our membership in live sessions and recordings. To join us for another live session, explore our schedule of coming events at

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Today’s program was a bit of an experiment for us. Can you help us improve and innovate by answering a few short questions? (😉 Don’t miss the spot to suggest new program ideas.)

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Next Week: Kathy’s Corner

This popular monthly session focuses on a challenge for every family historian: Sorting and digitizing collections of inherited family photos and artifacts. Our speaker, Projectkin member Kathy Stone, has decades of experience as a professional photo organizer and is now working on her family history projects. This is one of our most popular events each month. I hope you’ll join us.

Learn more and register at

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Project Recipes 🔐
Archives of our Project Recipe events as shared with all subscribing members. Each month we share new recipes with downloadable details, resources, and a transcript. To learn more about the next Project Recipes scheduled, see