The World’s Greatest Storytellers?

I hope you don’t agree with this list.2011 adj

by Andy Scheer

Want to grab 15 minutes of buzz? Compile a list of the world’s greatest anythings. If the category hits home with enough people, expect a reaction.

Consider the list of the “world’s greatest storytellers” recently compiled by and presented in the form of an infographic at

The British group interviewed 500 people in these categories: authors, educators, entrepreneurs, journalists, and students, as well as people working in finance, health care, marketing, and media. (The infographic includes a bar chart showing the types of storytellers each group favored, whether author, musician, poet, politician, painter, presenter, actor/film director, playwright, business person, or screenwriter.)

The study’s top six is skewed decidedly toward recent British storytellers, with two nods to greats of English literature: William Shakespeare and Charles Dickens.

The other top four “world’s greatest storytellers” (in chronological order):

Roald Dahl
Stephen King
Neil Gaiman
J.K. Rowling

Yes, Jesus made the list, but with fewer votes than Cormac McCarthy, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and David Attenborough.

Disagree? Take your own survey, post your findings, and stand back.

About Andy Scheer

With more than 30 years in publishing, Andy Scheer has provided freelance editorial services since 2010. He has edited fiction and nonfiction for publishers including Moody, WinePress, and BelieversPress, as well as for clients including Dirk Cussler, McNair Wilson, DiAnn Mills, Heather Day Gilbert, and Sammy Tippit.

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