I think this is true of writing too. You never know what in your work will resonate with people. You have to write what feels true to you (meaning what you are passionate about), send it out into the world, and not worry about the reaction. The reaction belongs to the readers.
When I tell a story—when I do anything onstage—it sounds crazy, but I don’t concern myself with the reaction. Because every listener is different, so they’re going to pull something different out of the story. I think a lot of times performers, and storytellers in particular, make the mistake of trying to manipulate their audience’s emotions or reactions. But I think when you tell the story, you tell the truth as much as you can, and it’s up to them what they take away from it.
–Peter Aguero, master storyteller for The Moth
As far as I know, he’s no relation to Sergio Aguero. (A wee bit of English Premier League humor.)
Another great quote from an interview with him you can read here:
Well, your stories are, at a base level, about an emotional truth, and the more I tell stories and hear people’s stories, the more I realize we’re all the same. We think we’re these complicated animals, these special, unique flowers, and we are to a certain extent, but we also all know what it’s like to feel joy, to feel hate, to feel anger, to be sad, to be scared—we all know that. So you tell your story as much as you can at the base emotional truth, and then the two hundred people in the audience are reminded of two hundred stories of when they felt anger, or fear, or utter joy, you know? And that’s why, I think, I tell stories. It’s an amazing exchange of energy, a nonverbal communication that happens…