The Timpanogos Story Festival is returning to Utah Valley the first weekend in September. Tickets are available for the whole weekend, the day, or per show. You can also visit timpfest.org for a list of the shows and prices. The main festival takes place Mt. Timpanogos Park in Provo Canyon.

The one that I am most excited for, in anticipation of Halloween of course, is "Shivers in the Night" on Friday, Sept. 2. Check back here for full coverage of this night of the festival.

My excitement probably spawns from the fact that I have a passion for scary stories. When I was in Elementary school, I can remember having sleepovers with my friends and reading Goosebumps books with a flashlight after the lights were out and the parents went to bed.  One of the girls always got too scared and eventually crept into her parents' room to spend the night. Coward. The rest of us were all scared senseless too, but we suffered through it. As I got older, I turned to legendary scare-masters like Edgar Allen Poe to make my heart race. I even tried my own hand at scary stories, but found that I lack a persuasively creepy vibe, which I guess could be a  good thing.

Although writing a frightening story takes a lot of talent, reciting one from memory is a whole different animal. For a story-teller to be good, it takes a special craftiness in multiple areas in order to be believable. Storytellers have to have impeccable timing, excellent facial expressions and a certain voice; it's impossible to exactly define this "voice", but in essence it has to be engaging and intriguing, making you want to hear more. Most importantly, a storyteller must be sensitive to the listeners and be able to feed off of and respond to their emotions and responses.  After all, it is the audience that makes an excellent story teller. If the listeners buy into the story and are sold, you've just succeeded. So, grab a friend or a significant other and learn from the masters at the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival.