Here’s what you need to cover to get the best mark possible 😊
🍄 Focus on QUALITY not quantity – think twice about covering too much time. Some of the best short stories only cover an hour or two.
🍄 Focus on the DETAILS.
🍄 Choose a GENRE if you like – science fiction, thriller, fantasy etc – and weave in its conventions.
🍄 STRUCTURE is important:
- Describe the setting (year, time of day, country, urban / rural, location, weather)
- Introduce your main character(s)
- Introduce a conflict or problem:
- character vs person
- character vs self
- character vs environment
- character vs society
- Create rising tension – short sentences are great for this.
Your narrative structure can be chronological, use flashbacks, have a circular structure.
🍄 CHARACTERISATION – details will bring them to life!
- thoughts – via first person or third person pov
- interaction with other characters
🍄 Depending on the question, you may be required to show an underlying THEME, ISSUE, SOCIAL VALUES, ATTITUDES etc.
🍄 Show off your LANGUAGE ABILITY
- descriptive language - verbs, adjectives, and verbs
- figurative language – simile, metaphor, personification, onomatopoeia, hyperbole, alliteration, allusion, symbolism
🍄 Vary your sentence lengths and types – short, compound and complex. Don’t start them the same way all the time. Mix it up. Keep it fresh! It makes it interesting.
🍄 Proofread to within an inch of your life! Capitals, apostrophes, speech marks, spelling, paragraphs, full stops, commas. A common punctuation error is the comma splice – students use a comma to punctuate the end of a sentence when it should be a full stop.
🍄 CHEAT’S TIP: If you’ve reached Yr12 and still don’t know how to use a comma, well, at least you're honest! Don't sweat it at this late stage. But STAY SAFE and perhaps only use full stops. Except in lists – surely you know how to use a comma in a list 😊 By NOT putting them in the wrong places, you prevent your work from being penalised so heavy when it comes to sentence structure and punctuation.
🍄 Sometimes the question may ask you to only write the OPENING OF A NARRATIVE. In this case, the focus must definitely be on the detail (setting and character). Bringing your scene to life. Introduce the conflict and then end your narrative at that point.