WHAT. THE.... frequently asked questions ...

Here you will find information on many things pertaining to freelance storytelling life in Scotland and signposts to support in our community.

Can’t find the information you are after? Get in touch with the SSF’s National Storytelling Development Officer who will try their best to help, do a bit of research and add it to this section.


[email protected] 


Let's start at the very beginning, as Julie Andrew says ... It's a very good place to start...

What the deuce is TRACS, The Storytelling Forum and The Storytelling Centre? Aren't they the same thing?



TRACS (Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland) brings together three forums: The Scottish Storytelling Forum, The Traditional Dance Forum of Scotland and The Traditional Music Forum in a collaborative alliance designed to improve the knowledge, practice, development and advocacy of Scotland’s traditional arts in a contemporary world – making music, storytelling and dance, accessible for all.


Scottish Storytelling Forum (SSF)

The SSF is a diverse network of storytellers, organisations and individuals supporting Scotland’s vibrant storytelling community. It is a charity and a membership organisation that operates nationwide with links to storytelling communities across the world.

SSF supports a storytelling apprentice scheme, maintains a directory of professional storytellers, establishes storytelling outreach projects in communities and schools, offers support and development opportunities for storytellers. SSF is pretty much is all things advocacy, development, promotional and communicative for storytelling, trying our best to keep this wonderful traditional artform alive and thriving.  It is spearheaded by a National Development Officer, employed and financed by TRACS on behalf of the Forum.


The Scottish Storytelling Centre

Or, The Centre, as it’s affectionately known, is an Edinburgh based (AWARD WINNING, IF YOU PLEASE) venue that hosts events and workshops. In short, TRACS and the SSF are currently based at the Scottish Storytelling Centre. The Centre operation is separate to TRACS/SSF but they often work collaboratively together.

TRACS and Forum’s staff

Scottish Storytelling Centre Staff

Is there information on being or becoming a freelance storyteller?

Yes, download the Illustrated Freelancer Guide

The Illustrated Freelancer Guide is a practical resource for the increasing number of artists, makers, writers and other creatives working freelance in Scotland today.

It was created to fill an information gap for creative freelancers to understand their rights and best practices in avoiding and addressing difficult situations.



Is there a booking letter and invoice template I could use?

Sure are. Download and amend as you see fit.

Booking Letter and Invoice Template For Storytellers

Recommended Booking Rates

Booking Guidelines and Tips


Having written confirmation of the terms of your gig ensures both sides know what is expected.

We advise you to use the booking template for both online and live bookings. Make it clear to the venue or booker that there is no agreed booking until the contract is signed by both parties and that you have clearly outlined your rates,  copyrights, streaming and the shelf life of any recorded work, i.e. who this may be shared with beyond your event.



Got ideas for an event or project and needing to find some spondulicks to make it happen. It’s always worth checking in with National Development Officer who always has their ear to the ground but here’s some useful generic info…

Creative Scotland Funding

Funding and Grants 

Small Grants For Traditional Arts

Themed Year Funding


This section will be updated regularly so please keep an eye out.

I work with schools, do I need a certificate?

We recommend you get a PVG.

It is the responsibility of the host organisation to supervise you appropriately when working with children or vulnerable adults during the session. We expect you to take reasonable steps and work with the host organisation to help them ensure the safety of children and vulnerable adults.

The Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) membership scheme is managed and delivered by Disclosure Scotland. It helps ensure people whose behaviour makes them unsuitable to work with children and protected adults cannot do ‘regulated work’ with these vulnerable groups.

If you are on The Scottish Storytelling Forum’s Directory of Storytellers, We suggest you have this.

Apply for a PVG

Can someone give me any help to promote an event?

Sure thang, cool thang.


If you’re not sure where to start you might want to download this guide.

It’s the Scottish Storytelling Forum’s PR and Social Media guide. Largely designed to promote local events as part of The Scottish International Storytelling Festival but it’s a handy all rounder, really. It’s got press release and photocall templates and tips on how to promote on social media. Once established, get in touch with the National Development Officer who can promote it on all SSF channels too.


Now, off you go and promote your wonderful self.

PR-and-Social-Media-Guide-2021-Copy (1)



What's The Scottish International Storytelling Festival?


Darling, it’s the biggest party of the year. You really must update your calendar.

The Scottish International Storytelling Festival / SISF is one of the most admired storytelling events in the world and the largest of its kind. SISF brings together a large number of Scottish and international storytellers and musicians. It takes place in October each year and the Scottish Storytelling Forum heads up the local community and creative strands. The Scottish International Storytelling Festival/SISF, is programmed and administered by TRACS.

Scottish International Storytelling Festival 

Is there a storytelling sounding board?

Better than that, there's a whole Board of Trustees!



The SSF Board acts as a think-tank, advising on all aspects of storytelling development, and advocating the cause of storytelling and storytellers in all aspects of cultural and social life. The committee meet 4 – 6 times a year and are here to hear any recommendations or suggestions. You can get in touch with them directly or via the National Development Officer

SSF Board of Trustees

I'm a bit new to this, how do I become a storyteller or get involved in the scene?

Well, this is lovely news... welcome traveller.

You can get involved in many ways.

The surest way to find your path and to make sure you’ve got all the information you need is to join the Scottish Storytelling Forum and become a member. This will ensure that you’ll have all the latest information on development, networking and CPD opportunities as well as supporting the scene around you. We can help you find your groove. Whether that’s taking a backseat and enjoying the storytelling community, learning new skills to aid an already establish profession such as teaching, or helping you become a professional storyteller on our directory of tellers.

You may wish to engage in our apprenticeship and mentoring schemes led by professional tellers. If that’s the case, get in touch with Storytelling Apprenticeship in the first instance and also the National Development Officer for guidance in your next steps in storytelling.

Become a Storytelling Forum Member 

What’s My Next Steps in Storytelling?

Join the Storytelling Apprenticeship 


I'm a Directory Storyteller, is there a Code of Conduct I must know about?

There is and we recommend that you read it, know it and follow it.

This code ensures the high quality of storytelling events and work, the good reputation of all storytellers on the directory, as well as the reputation of The Scottish Storytelling Forum, so that we can continue to be effective advocates and champions for the rights of storytellers and the value of their work.

Storytellers listed on the directory must adhere to the code of conduct.

The Scottish Storytelling Forum is committed to the principles of equality, diversity and inclusion.
SSF does not tolerate bullying or harassment of any kind.
SSF champions the rights of storytellers and advocates for the value of their work.
We expect that storytellers will act in a way that upholds standards outlined in our Code of Conduct.

Policy Documents & Code of Conduct

As directory storytellers are also part of Scottish Book Trust’s Live Literature Database, we follow their guide of conduct also and directory storytellers must also.

Live Literature Code of Conduct 

How do I find out the latest storytelling news

We're broadcasting on all channels and may even send pigeons if you ask nicely.





Keep an eye on press too…

We draw the line at TikTok though. We simply just won’t go there.

“Let us go forth, the tellers of tales, and seize whatever prey the heart long for, and have no fear. Everything exists, everything is true, and the earth is only a little dust under our feet.”

― W. B. Yeats