Write about someone who was, or is, important to you. Write how that person impacted you. Bonus points for a crazy coincidence . . . The unexplainable event . . . The hilarious accident. The outsized personality. Write about how that person impressed you or changed you.
I learned about Brandon Stanton around 2009 as he began his Humans of New York project. Intrigued, I pre-ordered his book, which is now a prized possession.
From Brandon’s Humans of New York’s May 17 Facebook Page, about not being able to have personal interviews on the streets.
I was initially worried about doing these interviews remotely. I thought that without the context of the street-—the stories might lose their sense of immediacy and randomness. But the experiment has been quite a success. These remote interviews have been a real joy for me. It’s been great to connect—even over video. The stories have been really beautiful, and the extra supply of photographs have added another dimension.
So I’m looking forward to exploring this process even more.
You can submit your story and photo to Brandon:
Thanks to everyone who’s submitted. Many of the strongest submissions involve relationships. I think our voices tend to be most compelling when talking about other people. And not just ‘why this person is great.’ But ‘what this person did, and how it impacted me.’ A story can be strong without a twist. It cannot be strong without a transformation. So tell me how you were changed. But more importantly, tell me who changed you.
It always helps to include a photo. Strong writing is not a requirement. There’s no need to write three pages. And don’t worry about being a master storyteller. Just tell what happened in two or three paragraphs. If the story is selected, we’ll do a video interview and figure out all the details together. It doesn’t matter where you live. It doesn’t matter if you’re fancy, or fascinating. Just tell me the best thing that’s ever happened to you! Or even better—tell me about the best person that’s ever happened to you.