CREATIVE WRITING (Traditional Genres: Tall Tales, Myths, Fables and Legends

by  Hank Fincken: A National Theatre Company of One

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Hank has conducted dozens of writing workshops so he can craft each presentation to fit your group's unique need. If the teacher chooses to work withe these traditional genres, Hank will discuss what makes each genre unique and how to write this kind of fiction. Hank encourage students work in groups so that the better writers connect with the better talkers. Hank then asks students to read their writing aloud. Hank then encourages to students to give feedback in a positive way. Was the story true to the genre? What can be done to make it better? What word choices would make the piece come alive?

If the focus is on tall tales, Hank will begin with an original story he wrote himself. Hank will use his theatre experience to show how you make your stories come alive with the telling.

Hank also has samples of his own work that show the difference between a good-effort first draft and a quality final draft.

Teachers must discuss with Hank their educational goals before requesting this program. Hank will customize the content to each teacher's needs.

Program Rating

   based on 5 evaluation(s).
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About This Program


Multipoint: $200.00

Hank will provide a discount for multiple sessions requested on the same day from one school.


45-60 minutes (length will depend on teacher's needs)

Target Audience

Education: Grade(s) 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Adult LearnersPublic Library: Library Patrons Retirement Communities

Minimum participants:

You are paying for this. I want it worthwhile, but I would do it for one person, if necessary.

Maximum participants:

I suggest under 50, but we can talk about it.

Primary Disciplines

Career Education, Fine Arts, Gifted & Talented, Language Arts/English, Performing Arts, Reading, Special Education, Writing

Program Delivery Mode

Videoconference - H.323 (Polycom, Cisco/Tandberg, LifeSize, etc...)

Booking Information

Book it!

Receive this program and 9 more for one low price when you purchase the CILC Virtual Expeditions package. Learn more

For more information contact CILC at (507) 388-3672

Provider's Cancellation Policy

Sites canceling the program within one week notice will be charged half the regular fee unless the cancellation is weather related. Please remember I lose a full day whenever you cancel. Thank you.

About This Provider

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Hank Fincken: A National Theatre Company of One

Indianapolis, IN
United States

                                   SO YOU KNOW

I’m still performing, but I’ve had to adapt. At this point, no
one is booking in-person live Theatre. So, I do virtual
presentations. To keep it exciting, I perform an excerpt from each
play, discuss the research, and answer your questions. It’s a
performance, a workshop, and an adaptation to your unique interests.

GOOD NEWS FOR YOU: It’s cheaper. Since I usually work through
CILC, I give them a block-booking discount. That discount is for
you. And there’s another discount if you book a second
presentation the same day. Call it the family discount. That means
it’s your turn to do the dishes.

CILC is a virtual learning network. I have received 8 of their
national Pinnacle Awards. The judges are customers from the previous
year, 7 questions that must result in at least a 95% OUTSTANDING
evaluation. My mother never endorsed me with such a score.

LET’S TALK NITTY-GRITTY: I can perform in English and Spanish.
For years, school, colleges, and libraries have said they want
programs that appeal to their Latinx students. So, why didn’t they
call me? Either they found me too expensive or too white. This past
July I taught Theatre in Spanish in Ecuador for the fifth year in a
row. Am I a native speaker? No, but my Spanish is good enough to
tell bad jokes and get the job done. I inspire. In addition, I
lived in Peru and Costa Rica for 6 years.

LET’S TALK DIRTY: All my characters are controversial. That’s
why I chose them. I wanted to have meaty discussions about things
that matter. I will not be preaching simple answers, but I will help
you better understand complex questions. For example, if you think
Christopher Columbus and Francisco Pizarro are horrific men, then you
are simplifying the past the same way White America used to do. If
you want complex history, book me. If you want comfortable history
with easy to identify good guys and bad, please don’t. Don’t you
want to know the “whys” behind their behavior so you don’t
replicate their footsteps?? Hey, CC is not your lazy
brother-in-law! You can also see here that I refuse to let humor
with all its destructive powers creep into my program.

WHAT HASN’T CHANGED. My research is excellent. All my scripts
have been fact-checked by college professors, not college students.
I will present the most accurate history I can (and disregard faddish
history when possible), which provides soul-searchingful insight
about the past and hope for the future. I encourage thought-provoking
questions and will try to avoid only demonizing and stereotyping.

DON’T BELIEVE ME: Ask a tough question. Give me your best shot.   

Hank’s grandfather
used to say, “Go Back far enough and every successful family begins with a
horse thief. “ Then let’s take it as a given: All historical characters have
serious flaws, just like you and me.  Hank’s
goal in representing famous people from history is not to explore a rosy past
but rather to better understand mistakes while keeping in mind noble intentions
and achievements.  Of my eight original
one-man historical plays, six are appropriate for your venue. 

For thirty
years, Hank has presented historical plays with a bite.  He wants the audience to understand that the
past was as complex as the present and the only way to improve this inherited
culture of ours is to honestly discuss virtues and flaws.   No two performances are the same because all
Hank’s plays are interactive, and they evolve according to the interests of
each audience.  In one play, the main
character says, “The History you get depends on the questions you ask.”

provides award-winning study guides.  If
the audience (student or adult) comes prepared, Hank can go deeper into the
material.  Hank interprets prepared
students as a sign that the teacher is as committed to the success of the
presentation as he is.  Hank speaks to a
venue representative long before he arrives to make sure he covers the issues
that the teachers and/or audience think are important. 

Hank has added a new STEM component to all his plays. Details
about this, and how his programs meet state standards, are available upon


Indiana Arts Commission gave him the title of Master Artist, and the Indiana
Theatre Association gave him its Service Award for promoting Theatre throughout
the state.  He has performed all across
this nation and in Guatemala, Peru, Ecuador, and Spain.  In the summer of 2019, Hank received his
seventh national Pinnacle Award for his teaching of History and Creative
Writing through video conferencing.  

Hank Fincken

Program Details


Hank begins by reading an example of the genre selected by the teacher.
Students and Hank discuss the differences between genres.
Hank suggests a step by step approach for the writing of this genre.
Students write in small groups.
Students read their work aloud.
Students and Hank critique the writing.
Students are encouraged rewrite their work.
Depending on time restraints, students and teaches ask Hank questions.


Participants will:
*Develop appreciation for language and imagery
*Come to a clearer understanding of the step by
step process of creative writing
*Explore the role of conflict in short stories
*Differentiate the different traditional genres

Standards Alignment

National Standards

I have these on a separate sheet. Please contact Hank to get this information.