Learn: What is a Discover Indiana Story?

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Each Discover Indiana story is made up of a number of components, including:

  • Title
  • Subtitles  (<60 characters)
    • It works best if you divide the story text up into paragraphs with subtitles. The Discover Indiana Staff will be working with you to identify these for your first story so you can get a sense of how to do this.
  • Narrative  (approx. 300-400 words)
  • Curator’s Name (Author)
  • Images (approx. 6-9)
    • Without images, a site cannot be included. Please be in touch with the Discover Indiana staff if a story is going to have fewer than 6 images.
  • Image Captions/Credits
  • Location
  • Tags & Subjects
  • References

For example, our Indianapolis: Sacred Spaces tour is made up the following stories:


Etz Chaim Sephardic Congregation

You’re standing in front of Etz Chaim Sephardic Congregation’s current synagogue. The members of this congregation have fostered and maintained Sephardic laws, customs, and traditions in Indianapolis for over a century. Sephardic Jews are…


St. Mary’s Catholic Church

Rising 168 feet above you, St. Mary’s Catholic Church opened in 1912, though the German Catholic parishioners of Saint Mary’s built their first church in Indianapolis 1858. For more than 150 years St. Mary’s parish has been dedicated to serving…


Crown Hill Cemetery

Crown Hill Cemetery has served the Indianapolis area for more than 150 years as both a place of interment and a peaceful green space within the city. The burial ground sees more than 25,000 visitors annually; beyond those attending services, many use…


Indiana War Memorial

As you stand in the Indiana War Memorial Plaza, look north and south and take a moment to consider the vast scope of this area of remembrance. Although the plaza is now dedicated to all of Indiana’s veterans, it was initially designed specifically…


L.S. Ayres Department Store

L.S. Ayres Department Store was located at the intersection of Washington and Meridian Streets from 1905 to 1992. L.S. Ayres was not just a department store, but an experience that transformed the way women participated in urban society. While public…


Hinkle Fieldhouse

Hinkle Fieldhouse, formerly known as Butler Fieldhouse, is one of the oldest and best known basketball arenas in the world and has remained in continuous use since it opened in 1928. Few places represent the Hoosier obsession with the sport of…


Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument

You are standing in front of the Indiana Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument within Monument Circle. Although the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument primarily honors Indiana’s Civil War veterans, it also honors veterans from all American wars up until the…


As you begin to think about writing your first Discover Indiana story, keep in mind that these stories are not…

  • Encyclopedia entries: Discover Indiana stories are more than a series of dates and names. They engage readers by providing a sense of place through narrative. A story need not carry the full burden of telling everything about a site or person, and in fact it is an excellent idea to save some of the most revealing, startling, or memorable points for users to discover in the image captions. Details in the narrative should not be needlessly replicated in captions (and vice versa), though a passing mention offers connectivity.
  • Editorials on contemporary issues: Avoid editorial writing or lengthy analysis on contemporary debates and problems. While current debates about interpretations are tied to history and should be included in Discover Indiana stories when necessary, these issues shouldn’t overshadow the history of what you are writing about. 

Instead, Discover Indiana stories are intended to share not just the who, what, when, and where but also the how and why. One way to approach this is to apply what the American Historical Association calls the “into, through, and beyond” approach.  You want to understand the factors that got someone into an event, how the event transpired (the through), and what happened as a consequence of the event. Another approach is to consider the motivation of the individuals within your stories. What were their motives, hopes, fears, strengths, and weaknesses and how did those things connect to other major trends during the period?

Next: How do I compose the Story Elements?