How To Start The Story Writing – Teaching students to write a good story is an ongoing process. Start by learning character traits, point of view/perspective, setting, theme, plot, etc. Students need a basic understanding of story elements before they begin to write. I have created a series of blog posts covering these topics. Links to these posts are at the bottom of the page.
Once students understand story elements, writing a good story can begin. This post is a general overview of ten things to remember when writing a story. You will find links scattered throughout this article that go to posts that are zero on specifics.
- 1 How To Start The Story Writing
- 2 Writing The Opening Line — Good Story Company
- 3 Turn A Story Idea Into A Young Adult Novel With These Five Simple Steps
- 4 Writing Advice And Prompts
How To Start The Story Writing
FIRST SUGGESTION ~~ Have students write their designs on the fronts of the pages only. This makes editing much easier because the pages can be cut into two or more pieces. The pieces are then taped to another sheet of paper with spaces between them for students to add additional descriptions, details, etc. in the extra space.
Writing The Opening Line — Good Story Company
As you read the 10 things to remember, notice the pictures in the left column. These were created using screenshots from the Google Slide presentation.
Make sure your story has paragraphs. They say when you change time, place, topic or speakers. They help break up the page, so it’s not just a solid writing pad.
Show your reader that you have high quality, first class, superior, excellent, exceptional, excellent, brilliant, extraordinary, incomparable vocabulary by using 5 grade vocabulary words.
The Show, Don’t Tell method of writing is when the writer can create a picture in the reader’s mind. This type of writing eliminates the repetition of empty words like gong, big or sein.
Writing Exercise: Start At The End
Be sure to vary your sentences. Some should be short while others are long. Make sure the sentences start using different parts of speech.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like for students to have dozens of resources at their fingertips? This is what we did. Two folders were glued together. When these are set, they make a perfect study cart. Students created foldable organizers and doodle notes to stick on both sides of the card. So when a student couldn’t remember a rule for how to write quotes or needed a wow word for a story, it was right there.
This correction “trick” will not catch all types of errors, but really helps students focus on a few common mistakes that students often make in their story writing.
Have students mark the first word in each sentence of their stories. This makes it much easier for students to spot the next mistakes or places in the story where improvements can be made. After the first few words have been highlighted, have students look for the following:
Writing In The Third Person From The First Person
Note: One common mistake students make is to start a story from the third point of view, then switch to the first. Have students watch to make sure the characters’ names do not change from “Jack and Jill” to “I.”
Make a count of the first words used. Follow the “Three Strikes You Quit Rule.” This means that if three or more sentences start with the same word, you must overwrite one or more of these sentences.
One easy way to correct this error is to cut the story into parts. Cross out the sentence(s) that start with the same word. Insert several lines from a clean piece of notebook paper. Have students rewrite the “missing” sentence(s) with complex sentence(s).
Do the sentences change in length? Are some short and some long? Does the story contain a whole bunch of short hacky sentences?
Turn A Story Idea Into A Young Adult Novel With These Five Simple Steps
Note: Again, use the “Cut Out the Sentence Method” here, adding blank paper and creating space for students to write new sentences.
Does the story really have l-o-n-g sentences? This is often a sign of run-on sentences or not adding end marks. Check to determine if you have joined a chain of independent clauses with coordinating conjunctions (FANBOYS). How do you write a short story? How can you come up with a compelling story that is both concise and telling? Read on and find out.
A short story preserves characters and scenes, typically by focusing on just one conflict, and pushes toward a sudden, unexpected revelation. Go hard on the exposition and talk back story – your reader doesn’t need to know all that
There are really two different kinds of stories. There is the art form, “short stories”, which comes complete with characters, plot, description and style.
Writing Advice And Prompts
The “story” and the “short story” are not the same thing. The first one is just a story, we tell them all the time. The latter is an art.
The first step in writing a short story is to write the first thing, the “story”, that version of the story you tell a friend.
And if you write it, be sure to write it in one sitting. Just tell the “story”. Don’t overthink, don’t go off to do more research, don’t rest. Just write the story. Every time I break this rule, it takes me forever to finish the story.
You might think you already know who your main character is, but depending on your story, that might actually be harder than you might think.
Warm Up Writing Prompts
Your main character is not necessarily the narrator, nor necessarily the “good guy” in the story. Instead, the main character is the person who makes the decisions that move the story forward.
Your main character centers the story, drives the plot, and his or her fate gives the story its meaning. As you move forward in the writing process, it is important to choose the right main character.
Great first lines have the power to captivate your reader enough that it would be unthinkable to stop your story. If you want to hook your reader, it starts with writing the perfect first line.
Each story is composed of a set of scenes that take place in a specific place and time. A scene list keeps track of your scenes, helping you organize your story and add detail and life at every step.
How Not To Start A Story: 5 Bad Story Openers
You don’t have to follow your scene list exactly, but they definitely help you work through your story, especially if you’re writing over several sessions.
If you’re like me, you want to start researching as soon as you have an idea so you can fit as many details into the story as possible. The problem is that if you research too quickly, what you find will distort your story, causing it to potentially break under the weight of what you’ve learned.
By waiting until your story is well underway, you can avoid it derailing the research process, and at this point you can also ask very specific questions about your story instead of following tangents wherever they lead you.
Now that you know who your main character is, have the perfect first line, created your screenplay list, and done your research, it’s time to finally write this story.
How To Write A Scene: Nailing Purpose And Structure
We all write differently. Some write quickly in several drafts, others write slowly and edit as they go. I will not tell you how to write. Whatever works for you, just do it. Aspiring autobiographers often email us with the question: ‘how can I write my own story?’ Try these 7 life writing tips to get started:
There are many ways to approach life writing. You could follow a non-fiction approach and put dates, facts and memories as close as possible to events as they happened.
Another option is to fictionalize and blur the line between fact and fiction. This approach to life writing can be helpful if you want to:
Barthes continues to give the reader fragments written in the third person, interspersed with captioned photographs of his youth. For example, in one passage entitled “Arrogance” he writes:
Steps To Writing A Solid Flash Fiction Story
He does not like proclamations of victory. Disturbed by the humiliations of others, when victory appears somewhere, he wants to go somewhere else. Barthes, Roland Barthes, p. 46.
By describing himself in the third person, Barthes gives the reader insight into his views and values, just as a normal autobiography can. However, in their fragmentary third-person presentation (without narration) they become short, philosophical musings, rather than a traditional linear “story” with character development. The memoir is very well told
For example, will your book cover birth to the present day? Or a few weeks or months spanning either side of a major life event?
First-person narrators in fiction give us examples of narrative approaches to time that we can also adopt in writing about our lives.
Roman Story Writing
To begin my life with the beginning of my life, I note that I was born (as I am informed and believe) on Friday, at twelve o’clock at night. Charles Dickens, David Copperfield (1850), p. 5 (1992 Wordsworth Editions).
I was born in Blunderstone, in Suffolk, or ‘something like that’ as they say in Scotland. I was a posthumous child. My father’s eyes closed on the light of this world for six months, when mine opened on it. Dickens, David Copperfield, p. 6.
This approach to time gives a linear sense of the way life progresses,
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