The Art of Telling the Right Story

July 29, 2021

By now you’ve all heard about the decision Simone Biles made at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo when she decided to remove herself from the team gymnastics competition. This story has been told in countless ways. Most of them deeply critical of the incredible athlete. While Draper DNA understands there are many opportunities to tell a story, and that the medias job is often to create headlines that entice readers to click and read, we believe that there is a beautiful, unique art to finding an untold – but very powerful – story. The art of telling the right story.

Altering the narrative.


Miss Biles made a personal decision about her career that none of us can fully understand. And don’t need to, quite frankly. What we can understand is that when she made that decision, the three other members of the US Olympics women’s gymnastics team immediately stood up and did whatever they had to do. No questions asked. With Simone out, the rotation for the remainder of the event had to be altered unexpectedly.

First up, Jordan Chiles was not anticipating having to take the place of Biles. But she did. She was asked to perform a routine on the uneven bars in Biles’ place. With only :30 to prepare, she jumped up, held on and swung her heart out. With grace, with confidence and with such beauty it was empowering. Even for those of us that can’t do a simple pull-up, let alone that astounding routine.

Chiles also did it flawlessly. And she knew it. When she stuck her landing, she jumped for joy, cheered, even pumped her fists. All before running to hug Simone and the team. Team being the operative word.

Where is that story being told?


Following suit (literally), Grace McCallum and Sunisa Lee, without hesitation, sparkled (another suit reference) during their memorable performances. We would go so far as to say Lee didn’t make a single mistake and McCallum handled every move – even those she didn’t expect to make that night – without blinking twice. All while Chiles was singing and dancing to keep spirits soaring.

Where is that story being told?


When you search anything, and we mean ANYTHING about that team event in this year’s Olympics, the results are all about Simone Biles and the decision she made. While, of course, that’s important, there are so many more stories to be told about that night.

There’s a saying in this industry, “Tell the right story to the right people at the right time” and that doesn’t always mean the most obvious. The art of storytelling is to find the untold story, the one that still matters and needs to be shared. Even if it’s not the one everybody else is telling.

It’s easy to have an opinion about what Miss Biles did, but it’s also easy to talk about all the good that came out of it. More of that, please.

What are your thoughts on what stories have been told in this year’s Olympics? We would love to hear them. Please share with Abby at

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