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Creative Writing: Hints [Includes Different Text Types] (1 Viewer)

anti

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There are two approaches to Creative Writing: quiet confidence or utter terror. If you fall in the latter category, never fear: here's a collection of hints gathered from the forums and personal experience; hopefully it will help you in what can be the most painful part of the Area of Study paper!

For those of you who are Quietly Confident about your Creative Writing skills, feel free to add to this thread!


Keep It Simple
Remember you only have forty minutes to do this entire section (if you've planned your time properly). Give yourself five to ten minutes planning and about half an hour to write. A concise, well-planned piece is much better than a long, rambling idea that doesn't go anywhere.

Choose a single idea and work its guts out. Many masterpieces revolve around a single idea - think about Titanic. It's a three hour epic about a ship sinking. Having a single idea also lets you keep coming back to this idea if you lose focus or start to panic. "What was I talking about? Oh yes, a dog who runs away from home."


Vocabulary
This is an important aspect of any creative piece. Because it is short and imaginative, it is IMPERATIVE that your language reflects two things: your grasp of the content (what are you writing about) and your grasp of the language (how are you writing it). You don't have a lot of time to prove to the marker that you know what you're talking about.

Vocabulary improvements are not impossible, so don't discount this point as moot. A single word a day for a week means you have seven new words to put into your creative writing piece. They don't have to be heptosyllabic (that's not a word): you simply need a more descriptive word for something everyday. Compare:

Her face turned a lighter shade of avocado. "You put what in the curry?" she spluttered.
with

She looked sick. "The curry was gross," she said.
Get a thesaurus. They're cheap (or free: http://www.thesaurus.com) and whenever you want a synonym, just look it up.


Structure
I said simple before. This goes for structure as well. Yes, it's possible to write a postmodern chef d'oeuvre with sentences running perpendicular to the traditional top-to-bottom structure but.. no. You are not e.e. cummings. Your words should do the talking. (Feel free to disagree with me.)

If you are stressed, the hardest thing in the world is to be creative with structure as well as content. Don't forget your sentence structure, paragraphing, and punctuation such as speech marks and commas. You'll be practising this with your essays anyway, but remember that the basics apply to creative writing as well.


Perspective
Point of view is an easy way to show change. Writing in the first person ("I") means you can write about the narrator's thoughts without batting an eyelid. Writing in the third person ("He") is good for showing a broad range of elements - it's also the easiest form to maintain.

Writing in the second person ("You") is fiendishly difficult to maintain, since you have to often second-guess the reader.

If in doubt, third person is the way to go: it is natural to write in and it avoids nasty pitfalls like making assumptions about context and character.


Characterisation
You're writing a short story, not Ulysses. Unless it's integral to the plot to know that your protagonist's name is Charlie and he has a twelve year old sister who's currently studying Biology, Chemistry, Physics and French, and that his favourite pop idol is Weird Al although he doesn't like to admit it to his friends because they listen to Kelly Osbourne and think that Weird Al is, well, weird - then don't mention it. It bloats your story AND it wastes your time.

Many short stories don't even need anything more than a first name for the main character(s). If you're talking about animals, you often don't even need to go that far.

Generally, only the protagonist in a short story will develop. You don't have time to explain how other people have changed - you need to get your point through and the most obvious changes will occur to the main character or characters in your story.

In fact, creative writing doesn't require more than a single character to carry the plot. Don't get weighed down in details.


Gather Ideas NOW
So, you still have some time before the Big Day and you'd like to prepare a little? Great, sit down with a piece of paper and a pencil and start writing down thoughts. What are you thinking about? What's on your wall, on the TV, what are you listening to on the radio?

Once you get those creative juices flowing you can start developing plot ideas. What would that goldfish say if he suddenly found out he could breathe out of water? What would you do if you won a million dollars on Temptation? Be brief - you should write a sentence or two maximum about each idea, and focus on the flow of the story and the ending.

Although you may never use these ideas, it's good to have something to come back to if the question surprises you. If you sit there for long enough and doodle you'll come up with less everyday ideas, which are infinitely more fun to write about and generally get more attention from markers too.

If you like pre-preparing before exams, it's also possible to prepare a standard creative writing piece beforehand, but I've never done so so I won't try to explain how to do it. :)


Endings
The end is everything. It's the last thing a marker will read and hence the most likely part of your story that they will remember.

Twists are nice, but unless you have a twist in mind, don't stress yourself trying to turn your story inside out and upside down. A nicely wrapped up straight ending is so much more pleasant than reading a struggle with where the story wants to go and where the author wants it to go.

Have the ending in mind even before you write your first sentence. Spending some time thinking about an ending should go into your planning time - a conclusion is part of your whole plot / idea and you shouldn't avoid it just because thinking of an ending is hard!

A final word of advice from me: DO NOT FORGET THE ENDING. Regardless of whether you are writing a feature article or short story, poem or letter, not finishing is almost as bad as not writing anything at all.


In the Exam...
I like to leave Creative Writing til last - firstly because I find it the easiest and secondly because it gives me all the time in the world to finish it (provided I can answer my other questions).

Some people like to do it first, so you make sure you have an ending (creative writing is useless without an ending, whereas you can quickly wrap up essays).

Either way, you should ensure that you give yourself enough time to write your piece in its entirety AND give yourself time to proofread it at least once. For some reason commas generally get misplaced a lot in creative writing, so check your grammar as well as the general plot flow.

Write down ideas - if you think of one during reading time then write it down as soon as you can in sentence or dot form. Think about features that you'd like to include - quotes? conversations? characters? any language techniques such as metaphors? - and make sure you have a conclusion before you even begin writing.

Finally - don't forget the title, particularly if it's a short story or feature article.

Speeches

The idea behind a speech is to convey an idea to the audience; it is sometimes persuasive but usually it is used to inform.

It’s important to remember that somebody would be expected to read this speech (probably you!) – this is why you can’t just whack a few attention-catching jokes to the intro and end and call it a speech.

Construction
Like a feature article, your speech has to catch the attention of the audience. A lot of the techniques used in feature articles for creating repartee, making an impression etc. can be used in speechwriting – anecdotes and rhetorical questions, for example. The idea here is to make an impression so everybody sits up and says ‘hey, this guy is interesting’. Later in the body of your speech you want them to say ‘hey, he’s not just interesting, he knows what he’s talking about!’. Finally you want them to remember what you’ve said.Your conclusion should be more memorable than an essay conclusion, or even a feature article conclusion. It’s pretty much a fact that people will probably only take away about 10% of a speech; let that 10% include your conclusion!

Planning
So again I’m going to mention the dreaded Plan. Why don’t people plan? It’s the simplest thing you can do which will keep you on track and help you regain your train of thought if you lose focus.

Before writing down exactly what points you want to talk about (for example, ‘Huxley context vs Scott context’, ‘how globalisation in Clueless is exposed – commercialism, fashion etc’) you want to read the question and decide what it’s asking you to do. Is it asking you to inform? Is it asking you to analyse, debate, criticise, discuss? If you’re asked for something a lot more analytical you could probably assume you’re giving a lecture on the texts of your choosing. If it’s asking you to ‘write a speech about’, you can choose the level of language to suit your audience. (see below)

Then you can write down your arguments / points of discussion and how they relate to one another. If you’re asked to discuss your texts, you might want to show both sides of the discussion and then resolve the discussion in your conclusion. Make sure you plan out your conclusion so you know exactly what you’re going to write in it. Don’t just leave it to ‘when I get around to it’.


Language
Write your speech for your audience. If you are requested to write for “people your age”, you don’t want to be using four syllable words and long sentences. To get their attention you need to be snappy and to the point. Nobody can read over your speech a second time – once you’ve said it, that’s it. I’ve heard that the best way to get your point across in a speech is to say it three times in three different ways. People your age don’t want to hear about things not relevant to them or their times. A great skill of speechwriters is being able to connect with their audience.

Speeches are allowed to be emotional: you are talking to an audience and putting forth your perspectives, but avoid the sentimental. The line you have to draw is having enough wit to keep the audience’s attention without them thinking that you’re just appealing to their softer side, not to their intellect.

Avoid being too general. It’s not enough to say “it is not the journey which matters but the process” (for example – I know you’re sick of journeys!); you need to elaborate and go into some detail as to why and how you think that way. Facts are good, you’ll probably be referring to additional texts so quote them, feel free to reference bored of studies too (for extra bonus points) :D



Writing it down
There’s a few other things I want to mention about speechwriting in an exam situation.

Firstly, keep your sentences and paragraphs short. In a real speech nobody sees those paragraphs and sentences all seem to flow together (at least, they should) but it will assist markers who are trying to follow the flow of your speech. Eg.:

“The opening scenes of Blade Runner give rise to a number of questions: where are we? What are we doing here? If this is Earth, how did it end up this way? Scott emphasises his vision of the future with panoramic shots of plumes of fire and smoke rising up through the ruins of ‘Los Angeles’ in the near future.

This vision is then starkly contrasted with whatshisface’s pyramid rising out of the ruins like some kind of monument to a deity. Capitalism has taken its toll on the city, it seems. Scott asks us: is this the future?”
(I really have to watch BR again.)

You CAN include stage tips, but I think it’s bad form to include “(laughter)” – c’mon, if they’re meant to laugh they’ll laugh regardless.

For some people it’s hard to write ‘funny’ during an exam so figure out some generalised openings maybe and adapt them in the exam. I’ve never done this and I don’t know how effective it is. Maybe a “God is dead” quote for BR/BNW or something. (Nietzsche, if you’re wondering).

Avoid retelling the story. Assume the audience knows the plot, who the characters are – although you could probably include something about ‘Deckard, a rebellious officer of the law..’ – and focus on telling them the themes and techniques.

I’ve always found telling the audience situations is a lot more effective than stating things to them – allow them to draw their own conclusions, and then back it up at the end of your point. Then again I think this is a lot harder to write than a conventional speech.

And as I said at least twice up there (three times, remember?): don’t be too funny. Make sure you get your point across, whether you’re trying to persuade or inform the audience. If you’re having a mental blank dump the corny jokes and just tell them what you know about your texts – you won’t get full marks for style, but you’ll do better than writing superfluous barrels of nothing.


NEW! The Conclusion
Concluding your speech is probably the most difficult part (once you've figured out what to write) because you're probably running short on time, getting a little stressed, and you have to be certain you've covered everything! And those damn examiners are saying "ten minutes left' LIKE YOU DON'T KNOW (sorry.. getting a little edgy here I think ;) )

Okay. Here's a quick overview of what your conclusion should achieve.

* Remind the audience of your topic material.
What were you talking about?

* Cover your points again
What were they AND what relevance did they have to your topic material? If you're trying to use an analogy, mention it again, and state why it's relevant to your topic. It's a very blunt technique, I know, but it ensures that the marker will be able to link your little childhood stories to your actual subject (eg. inner journeys)

* Catch the audience's attention for the last time (especially if you think your speech bombed).
A final joke works if you're a funny person, or another witty story. In a written speech it's not a good idea to 'cool down' like an actual speech-giver would do (eg. moving away from the microphone) because it's hard to implement that on paper. If you want to include actions, try to keep them to a minimum and make it really obvious why they're important (I can't think of an occasion when you'd want to do this.. but the idea is always there for you)

If you had no idea what to write about and you think your speech was a bit too much like an essay, this is where you can remind the marker that they're reading a speech. Keep the tone casual in your conclusion (unless you're talking to a conference or something which requires a formal tone) - not slangy, but maintain a connection with the audience ("As you all know.." "Maybe you'll go home today and think about this.." "If there's one thing you take from my speech today..").

* Give the audience something to clap about
In my opinion there are two really easy speeches to write: the funny speech and the motivational speech, mainly because concluding both is a piece of cake.

For a funny speech (which has no substance) you can just crack another joke (see any of Wil Anderson's ramblings in the Good Weekend for example). For a motivational speech (eg. "The journey is all in the first step") you can really punch your points in. Think patriotic. Think 'this is the most important thing in the world'. And then use that vocabulary of patriotic terms.

"Despite where the journey goes, where it concludes - or even if it never concludes at all - it is that first step that makes the difference. Without the catalyst, that sudden spark of spontanaeity that causes the wheels of time to start turning once again, we will never take those journeys that shape our culture, our environment, or ourselves. 'Go and open the door.' Don't let fear stop you."
 
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anti

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anti's Guide to Interviews / Conversations

Interview / conversation

I put these text types together because they’re very similar. Essentially an interview is a conversation, but one side asks questions rather than answers them. Conversations are about half again as hard to write because rather than allowing your interviewer to lead the respondent to an answer, you have to make both your characters discuss a theme or idea.

Because interviews are easier, I’ll handle them first :D

An interview is the same regardless of whether it’s on TV, radio or email. The only thing you might want to be aware of is that you can include stage directions in a TV interview – although this is really unnecessary. The idea is to do a transcript of an interview, by the way, not the actual interview itself.

It’s good to introduce your characters with a bit of a blurb at the top of your page. You might also want a date and maybe a title (radio interview with Joe Bloggs, 2UE). Your blurb might be creating the scene for a TV interview or just telling us where it is and who the interviewer is.

Interview with Sideshow Bob, Springfield Prison, 19 October 2004
Camera pans in from the right of stage, swinging around Sideshow Bob’s frizzy hair three times before settling to his right. The interviewer looks a bit like Lionel Hutz and is quite nervous in the prison surroundings. He clears his throat and straightens his tie.

I tend to write my conversations in the following style for ease – it saves me having to write quotation marks.

Interviewer (I): So, Sideshow Bob, you’ve been imprisoned for twelve years. How does it feel?
Sideshow Bob (SB): Absolutely fantastic.
I: I hear you’ve been giving the cooks a bit of trouble here.
SB: Ah yes, they won’t let me buy corn on the cob anymore. Say it’s bad for my health. *Laughs insanely. Interviewer shifts uneasily in his chair*

I don’t really mind stage directions, sometimes they can add a bit of personality to my characters! Particularly if you’re doing, say, Cordelia the boring wench from King Lear..

Your language should be appropriate to the characters’ usual tone and manner of speech. It’s not compulsory to write in Shakespearean ‘thou hast wronged me, Gonerill!’ type language, but it can definitely add a bit of pizzazz if you’re up to it. Don’t swear unless the character is known for swearing. Don’t use colloquial language unless it’s appropriate to the character’s context (say, a ten year old boy living in the US might say ‘don’t have a cow, man’).

It’s probably best to let the interviewer be an anonymous personality if you don’t have a good reason for making them a real character. The problem with real personalities is that they can get in the way with the rest of your interview – why are you including them if they don’t say anything?. However, choosing an appropriate figure can add context: for example, John Laws or Alan Jones when discussing current affairs. Just be careful with talkback hosts because the idea is NOT to get angry at your interviewee!

When writing an interview choose your questions carefully – this is what you’ll write when you’re planning. Which three or four points are most important in answering the question? You can allow your respondent to elaborate more thoroughly on those points, or you can split each major point into two or three subquestions eg.

Point: Atmosphere in blade runner
“Mr Scott, what gave you the idea for the first panoramic scene in Blade Runner?”
“What was the inspiration and what is the meaning behind the gigantic pyramid of the blah corporation?”
“Did you intend the fuzzy, blurring effect created by the rain when we first see Deckard?”


Conversations.

Conversations are immensely more entertaining. Rather than an interviewer/respondent you have two equal characters having a discussion. What makes conversations harder to write is that they mustn’t lose the plot and start talking about something else. It’s really really really really really easy to make King Lear start talking to Gloucester about his kids, and how are they, and really? And where’s their mother, ah yes, she’s been dead for some eleven years, that’s shocking, really, now, we should get back to talking about the THEMES AND TECHNIQUES IN KING LEAR.

I like to choose characters with differing views because it just begs for confrontation. Have one present one side of the conversation and one present the opposition. Conversations are really boring when one character is just saying “yes, yes, I agree totally, that’s fantastic”.

Again when planning write out your major points, but write out your points of discussion as well – both sides of the argument. It’s not enough to get one character to introduce a theme and the other to talk about it, because that doesn’t really provide discussion..

I haven’t been asked many questions on conversations before, so it’s hard to tell what you guys know and what you want to know about. I’ll leave this open for additions in the future as I get your feedback.
 

anti

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anti's Guide to Diary/Journal Entries and Letters

Diary entries / Journal entries / Letters

This is probably a text you won’t be asked a lot of in the modules section, but just in case you are..

All three come under a single genre really. They’re personal reflections on a theme, place, situation or person. Important words here are ‘personal’ and ‘reflection’.

Little things
Because I’ll forget otherwise (everybody does), letters and diary entries should have a date. Letters usually have an address. You also need some kind of address to the recipient eg. Dear Diary, Dear My Sweetheart Far In Rome, etc. You will probably want to sign off – and don’t sign, just write your character’s name – after the body of the entry/letter. This will help the marker if your text hasn’t made it clear enough.


Construction
Letters don’t really need so much planning since they tend to focus around a single point (or several small points). It’s good to write down what your focus IS though, as well as examples from the texts you have studied.

Don’t waste time writing ‘My mother is fine, she came down with a bad case of bronchitis but she came through, bless her heart’ unless it’s necessary (ie. relevant OR it’s something that happened in the text which allows a reader to say ‘oh, this must be Mary Jane’).

Also don’t waste time retelling the story, only relevant parts – “I am in America. The ship sank – the Titanic, the unsinkable, sank! – and I do not know what to do. I cannot contact my family.” – which show some kind of insight into the character’s personality or situation.

Always write from the first person (I should have mentioned this first but I thought it was obvious).

Keep the tone of the character from whom you are writing, and if you choose a character who is not known for their memoirs (say someone illiterate), use correct spelling and grammar. It’s not worth losing a few marks for authenticity!

Note that people tend to use a bit more hyperbole in letters than they would in speech, and they only ever show their side of things, never the opposition.
 

em_516

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i dunno..maybe it's obvious..but i was just wondering..how do we actually incorporate our texts into the letter or diary entry..would it be like:

"i feel socially superior..just like Emma did in the novel by Jane Austen..rah rah rah" (yes..really poor example..i know)

or do we pretend to actually be Emma and mimic how she would have felt? is this even making sense? agh..
 

anti

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Usually diary entries will tell you to choose a character and write from their perspective - if they don't specify, always choose a character and write from their perspective.

I don't think I've ever seen an assessment that asks you to write and incorporate your texts ;)
 

Seraph

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Hey one thing anti
Hmmm , is it best in interviews to not let the interviewer really provide any feedback on the particular topic in teh form of a question?

example
interviewer: oh so what you are saying is ...........................?

or is that best left for conversations?
 

anti

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This might be a bit late :)

You could, if you think that your respondent hasn't made a point clear enough, or if you really want to emphasise a particular point. Wouldn't make a habit of it since it wastes time going over old material.
 

AJohnston1121

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I think the key to being confident is to PRACTICE!!!!!!!!!!! Make sure you know what your saying, like don't write it one night before its due like most of our class does *sigh*. Practice in the mirror, in front of your family/friends (even if they don't care). I use to be nervous with speeches but i'am not anymore (long story). The main things about cooling your nerves are stand upright. Use hand gestures and look not at the audience but i normally look at the back wall (it looks like i'am looking at the back row)

Also just imagine that everyone is holding a $100 note in their hand :)
 

anti

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Creative Writing: Hints

There are two approaches to Creative Writing: quiet confidence or utter terror. If you fall in the latter category, never fear: here's a collection of hints gathered from the forums and personal experience; hopefully it will help you in what can be the most painful part of the Area of Study paper!

For those of you who are Quietly Confident about your Creative Writing skills, feel free to add to this thread!


Keep It Simple
Remember you only have forty minutes to do this entire section (if you've planned your time properly). Give yourself five to ten minutes planning and about half an hour to write. A concise, well-planned piece is much better than a long, rambling idea that doesn't go anywhere.

Choose a single idea and work its guts out. Many masterpieces revolve around a single idea - think about Titanic. It's a three hour epic about a ship sinking. Having a single idea also lets you keep coming back to this idea if you lose focus or start to panic. "What was I talking about? Oh yes, a dog who runs away from home."


Vocabulary
This is an important aspect of any creative piece. Because it is short and imaginative, it is IMPERATIVE that your language reflects two things: your grasp of the content (what are you writing about) and your grasp of the language (how are you writing it). You don't have a lot of time to prove to the marker that you know what you're talking about.

Vocabulary improvements are not impossible, so don't discount this point as moot. A single word a day for a week means you have seven new words to put into your creative writing piece. They don't have to be heptosyllabic (that's not a word): you simply need a more descriptive word for something everyday. Compare:

Her face turned a lighter shade of avocado. "You put what in the curry?" she spluttered.
with

She looked sick. "The curry was gross," she said.
Get a thesaurus. They're cheap (or free: http://www.thesaurus.com) and whenever you want a synonym, just look it up.


Structure
I said simple before. This goes for structure as well. Yes, it's possible to write a postmodern chef d'oeuvre with sentences running perpendicular to the traditional top-to-bottom structure but.. no. You are not e.e. cummings. Your words should do the talking. (Feel free to disagree with me.)

If you are stressed, the hardest thing in the world is to be creative with structure as well as content. Don't forget your sentence structure, paragraphing, and punctuation such as speech marks and commas. You'll be practising this with your essays anyway, but remember that the basics apply to creative writing as well.


Perspective
Point of view is an easy way to show change. Writing in the first person ("I") means you can write about the narrator's thoughts without batting an eyelid. Writing in the third person ("He") is good for showing a broad range of elements - it's also the easiest form to maintain.

Writing in the second person ("You") is fiendishly difficult to maintain, since you have to often second-guess the reader.

If in doubt, third person is the way to go: it is natural to write in and it avoids nasty pitfalls like making assumptions about context and character.


Characterisation
You're writing a short story, not Ulysses. Unless it's integral to the plot to know that your protagonist's name is Charlie and he has a twelve year old sister who's currently studying Biology, Chemistry, Physics and French, and that his favourite pop idol is Weird Al although he doesn't like to admit it to his friends because they listen to Kelly Osbourne and think that Weird Al is, well, weird - then don't mention it. It bloats your story AND it wastes your time.

Many short stories don't even need anything more than a first name for the main character(s). If you're talking about animals, you often don't even need to go that far.

Generally, only the protagonist in a short story will develop. You don't have time to explain how other people have changed - you need to get your point through and the most obvious changes will occur to the main character or characters in your story.

In fact, creative writing doesn't require more than a single character to carry the plot. Don't get weighed down in details.


Gather Ideas NOW
So, you still have some time before the Big Day and you'd like to prepare a little? Great, sit down with a piece of paper and a pencil and start writing down thoughts. What are you thinking about? What's on your wall, on the TV, what are you listening to on the radio?

Once you get those creative juices flowing you can start developing plot ideas. What would that goldfish say if he suddenly found out he could breathe out of water? What would you do if you won a million dollars on Temptation? Be brief - you should write a sentence or two maximum about each idea, and focus on the flow of the story and the ending.

Although you may never use these ideas, it's good to have something to come back to if the question surprises you. If you sit there for long enough and doodle you'll come up with less everyday ideas, which are infinitely more fun to write about and generally get more attention from markers too.

If you like pre-preparing before exams, it's also possible to prepare a standard creative writing piece beforehand, but I've never done so so I won't try to explain how to do it. :)


Endings
The end is everything. It's the last thing a marker will read and hence the most likely part of your story that they will remember.

Twists are nice, but unless you have a twist in mind, don't stress yourself trying to turn your story inside out and upside down. A nicely wrapped up straight ending is so much more pleasant than reading a struggle with where the story wants to go and where the author wants it to go.

Have the ending in mind even before you write your first sentence. Spending some time thinking about an ending should go into your planning time - a conclusion is part of your whole plot / idea and you shouldn't avoid it just because thinking of an ending is hard!

A final word of advice from me: DO NOT FORGET THE ENDING. Regardless of whether you are writing a feature article or short story, poem or letter, not finishing is almost as bad as not writing anything at all.


In the Exam...
I like to leave Creative Writing til last - firstly because I find it the easiest and secondly because it gives me all the time in the world to finish it (provided I can answer my other questions).

Some people like to do it first, so you make sure you have an ending (creative writing is useless without an ending, whereas you can quickly wrap up essays).

Either way, you should ensure that you give yourself enough time to write your piece in its entirety AND give yourself time to proofread it at least once. For some reason commas generally get misplaced a lot in creative writing, so check your grammar as well as the general plot flow.

Write down ideas - if you think of one during reading time then write it down as soon as you can in sentence or dot form. Think about features that you'd like to include - quotes? conversations? characters? any language techniques such as metaphors? - and make sure you have a conclusion before you even begin writing.

Finally - don't forget the title, particularly if it's a short story or feature article.
 

MissSavage29

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Can i just mention not to forget some the very basics which are inevidably forgotten under HSC pressure

You should refer to the readers 5 senses - make them feel, hear, see etc your story to make it more interesting.

Dont forget that it is an english exam - and hence the markers want to know that you are aware that there are techniques in writing. While your whole peice should not read like a giant collection of english phrases put in a simile, metaphor, punctuation (like ! or ... or having no punctuation or longer sentences for meaning)
 

samuel_thom

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To add to that - spelling is really important - for example, the difference between inevidably and inevitably may be whole mark.
 
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I also recommend you use your introduction to establish the (past/present/future) tense of your story, as well as if the theme is expected or unexpected, that way you can mould only yyour intro and leave the rest upto more or less memorising (mostly)
 
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goan_crazy

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Most importantly, incorporate the stimulus or quote or whatever they give you into your writing!

Ps. captain gh3y... anti is a she :)
 

Mz_mE

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my teacher said that if ur talking about an animal.. never ever make that animal you. dont talk as though u are flying or u r searching for food becoz its sorta degrading you as a person and seems childish..
 
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Manan

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Also...maybe have some sort of grounding to it....eg historical basis or something. And something different, for example, I used the Armenian Genocide as the central theme to it and then just moulded that around the question...that gives you something to work with so you dont have to start your ideeas from scratch...
 

RubiX

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Re: Creative Writing: Hints

I think 1000 words would be plently. You can make a decent short story in 1000 words, as long as you have a good concept and finish it I don't think its size would really matter. I would seriously struggle to do 1000 words in a planned essay, let alone do that when i have to somehow be creative as well.
 

Tbomb2k

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Re: Creative Writing: Hints

anti said:
(creative writing is useless without an ending, whereas you can quickly wrap up essays)
I beg to differ. My opinion is the opposite.

In an essay you have to follow more strict guidlines and have balanced texts, techniques etc. So it would be unbalanced if you wraped up and essay when you run out of time. In creative writing on the other hand finishing up a story quicky doesn't affect it as much as in an essay.

I would do the creative writing last as i can keep the story going for as long as possible and finish it when i want and can still have impact. Whereas if you did essay last, you have a limit to the amount you write on it so it's not as easy to do a quick wrap up or keep it going like in creative writing. anyway... i should be studing, not analysing this bloody exam!!
 

kenny3107

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Re: Creative Writing: Hints

These notes are really good! Its going to help lots.

My tutor suggested that maybe you could create the characters beforehand and just put them in different situations
 

rachael.mcgee

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Re: Creative Writing: Hints

use your own experience and build on it.

also, one of the really early posts explained that you shouldn't just put in loads and loads of lyrical metaphors and some subtler stuff like aliteration, similes and all the techniques you know JUST FOR THE SAKE OF IT. e.g. some teachers say "put in loads of description (adjectives adverbs etc)!!"

this is what we've always been told, and it's a good starting point, but sometimes good writing can go beyond that -- don't TELL people what's going on, SHOW them. make it a bit subtler, getting the audience (the markers!) to have to make inferences, judgements on the characters and BECOME INVOLVED IN THE JOURNEY.

i dunno if that makes sense but i dunno how else to describe it
 

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Re: Creative Writing: Hints

it doesn't matter if the storyline is not 'originial' -- most sotires are ideas from what already exists out there anyway

what matters is how you write it.

try to have some fun with this piece and things actually turn out better ;)

characterisation is important so know your character!
also remember not to have too many events- one or two are enough. (keep it simple!!!)
too many events and yourisk sounding like "he did this...and then he did that...and then......and then...and then...." etc. if it sounds too repetitive and shallow like that, you need to add some descriptiong to it -- what the character thought/felt/saw etc , this is espcially important in journeys because it shows how the character developed over the process of the journey

gud luck!
 

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