I concentrate for a round and summon the wisdom of the madding crowd.
I am a storygaming n00b and not by coincidence also the usual GM for when my local gaming group plays RPGs (rarely, we mostly boardgame). I absolutely love the idea of storygames, but my regular play group is made up of very traditional board and RPG players. They're not opposed to storygaming; we've tried Fate and Microscope, but the experience was a mixed bag.
Basically, the challenges are these:
1) These guys aren't used to being creative on the spot. We had a lot of trouble in Microscope where people wanted to pass their turns because they couldn't think of anything. Generally these guys work in non-creative fields and don't do creative/artistic things as hobbies, so I think a lot of this is just lack of exposure/practice. I think with more time at the table we'll be able to tell who's just not interested in this kind of gaming, and who's just unsure of how to go about it.
2) They seem to like being railroaded, inasmuch as they're content to follow where the GM is dragging them without complaint (some of them play a lot of Pathfinder adventure paths, for instance). Given an environment where they can do/define anything, they tend to scatter off and do their own thing rather than find common cause, or in a storygame sense a common theme/genre/premise. Alternately, they end up with analysis paralysis and don't do anything. Again, I think this is more a lack of exposure to the concept, but there's some paradox of choice in there too.
3) We can generally carve out four hours once a week or so, but attendance isn't always consistent. So something that can be taught and played in an episodic manner in a single session would be ideal.
4) They are fairly mainstream in their tastes in fiction as gamers go. I mean, Grey Ranks could be the greatest beginner storygame on the planet, but I'm not going to be able to convince them to play a game about child soldiers in the Polish Uprising.
5) That said, one of them said unequivocally that he does not want to play any more trad fantasy. By which I suspect he really means D&D style fantasy, as he's the heaviest Pathfinder player.
There seem to be (ahem) a lot of storygames out there, and I've no idea where to start. Is there a good storygame for complete beginners to the concept? Ideally something with a fair amount of structure and or handholding? Thanks for any and all recommendations.