1. Opposite gender POV
- Invisible Card trick: creating
something out of nothing
- Writing can overwhelming for some.
To write a story is daunting. I want to show how when we break it into
smaller parts, we can create something out of seemingly nothing.
- Lets take something small.
A small word: Love. Use a fixed amount: 100 words. 100 words is manageable.
Write a 100-word story dealing with love. Also, lets make the
elements of the story closer to nothing: each word can only be one syllable.
- Writing time (8 minutes)
- Share aloud
- The one-syllable writing is the
start of a structured writing assignment. From here, we will further
develop the something out of nothing idea. Its called
55-Fiction. The rules are simple: write a complete story in 55 words
or less. Can it be done? See The World's Shortest Stories, Steve
Moss, ed., for this technique.
- Show Headed for Trouble
and In the Garden
- Pass out packets; read pages 218-222
aloud. This is where students are introduced to conflict (and the most
difficult part to write in these)
- Silently read the remaining 8
stories in the packet. How effective are they? In what way?
- Writing time: (20 minutes) Tear
out a piece of paper. We will work on the following three stories:
2. Teenager in high school
3. Your choice of a topic
- Turn in and randomly pass out.
People will read one they like and pass on again. (keeps author anonymous).
Read student work:
He and his wife had waited for the day their daughter was born
for so long. In the car, she was breathing heavily. He squeezed her hand
in reassurance. At the hospital, they were rushed to room 301. He sat
down at the end of the bed.
"Hello Kelly," he said to the surrogate mother.
From the Top
After thirty years of dedication to music, I had made it. My mom said
I couldn't do it, so I moved out. My dad said I was stupid for trying,
so I stopped talking to him. Now they're gone.
I take one more swig from the bottle, and watch
the ground come up very quickly.
The Sound of a Corner
The ticking of the clock pierced the ears of Frank White in
the dark night. "One day I will leave this place, Margaret," said Frank.
Silence fell heavily on the dark street corner where they first met.
"One day I will see you again," said Frank, and
walk away, alone.
One morning Joe was walking down the street when something caught
his eye was this love at first sight? He stopped to stare at this beauty
she was dressed in all red just sitting there. He went over to her and
within fifteen minutes he walked away with the keys to his brand new car.
Harold twirled the cigarette between his fingers, occasionally stopping
the rhythm to take a long drag. "If this is my last one, I'm gonna enjoy
it." A mask was pulled over his eyes. His wrists were strapped. His feet
Harold flicked the cigarette and skied down the
mountain a new man: smoke-free.
Playtime is Over
Seems like we've been trapped in here for weeks. I'm hungry and cold.
The only source of food is my comrade, resting quietly in the corner of
our snow-cave. Moral dilemma? Survival of the fittest? God forgive me...
"Boys! Dinnertime," Mom yells from the porch. My
little brother and I race into the warm house.
Love and a Round Table
Kyle again avoided his English homework. King Arthur meant little to his
world of skateboarding and stolen downloadable music. He glanced around
the class and noticed Gwen, an exchange student from England. Kyle smiled
as he imagined himself in Camelot rescuing his princess from ominous dangers..
He picked up his Excalibur and began to write.
How can we use this in class?
After twenty-two years, Thomas's time machine was complete. Sirens and
flashes interrupted his tinkering. A machine identical to his own materialized
in the laboratory. A bloodied clone of Thomas stumbled out. "Stop!" the
stranger shouted, "Don't finish it!" Thomas grabbed a pistol and fired.
As he nervously adjusted his glasses, his hand seemed to fade.
Needed: the Grace of God
Stanley remembered the day of his ordination from the church. An organ
blared and echoed against the walls before landing on the ears of a smiling
congregation. Speeches, vestments, and handshakes followed his first fiery
sermon. That was seven years ago. A sleeping woman stirred as he wept
toward his unfamiliar face in the mirror.
- Starting point for a story
- Ending of a story that we read
in class. Write what happens to a character in 55-Fiction format
- Writing for film (read Unmasked
Murder and show film)
She woke in a cold sweat and instinctively grabbed her husbands
hand, which lay on her hip. Snuggling up next to him, she said, I
had a dream you died. She rolled over to face him and found blood
dried on his pillow. Confusion hit, followed by hysterics when her eyes
fell upon his gun.
These are the published winners from the contest.
These are more examples from my students