Creative Writing: Homework

Today the class explored devices they know authors use to capture the reader’s attention. The discussion explored how frequently the best texts, films and television develop a character who has flaws that makes them unpredictable, yet likable. Many students identified anti-hero type characters as those who engaged their attention the most. While the students acknowledged the plot devices that create tension and suspense as clear methods of gaining and maintaining a reader’s attention, they tended towards valuing a well-drawn character over clever plot devices as being truly engaging.

The task for tonight is to generate a plan for a piece of writing which will be started in class tomorrow that is designed to capture the reader’s attention. The following are some of the ways we believe a text grabs a reader:


About Christopher Waugh

Challenging the norms of secondary teaching. Publishing every single thing my students and I create. Live in Wanaka, New Zealand - the best place in the world.

One response to “Creative Writing: Homework”

  1. jaydc13 says :

    The male stood across from me, claws at the ready. He has been chasing me for over an hour but I spotted him a few days ago hanging out of the old church window. I was just walking past when I heard a growl from above, it was him, drooling over my scent. If I hadn’t have run I was surely dead. But the male remembered my scent, and when I walked by the church today he didn’t wait. He leapt straight after me, down the path which leads to the cliff faces. The chase lasted until now. I trip over a fallen branch and freeze with fear of being ripped to pieces. The male slowly approaches, sensing his feast, salivating over the very thought of his meal. What he failed to notice was that he wasn’t the only one of us two to be affected by the 2025 nuclear winter. I aimed my palm and focused on releasing the strands which connected his brain to his body. “Eeep!”, the male fell to the floor with a dull thud. As I stand I think of shouting victoriously but daren’t do so in case the chase attracted too much attention. 

             Chapter 1
     This was a mere male ghoul, he had been transformed by radiation so that instead of having normal humanoid features, he had a wide range of duplex parts, from having three eyes to two times the amount of fingers on one hand, he had been atomically altered in a way that made his brain mush. The neurone pathways that were used for motor skills had become dominant and became parasitic to his more intellectual side  of pathways and had completely taken over. That is what made this creature, which warning, from a man into the hunting machine which he was, before I detached his brain that is. 

      That male was not the most dangerous creature out here, not by a far stretch, there were the likes of the chimera and hydra out here, animals that had fused and multiplied after and during the 2025 nuclear winter. I would have been one if those creatures or dead if not for my great grandfathers world war 2 underground bunker. 

     But living outside these last few years and eating the contaminated creatures that I had been able to find, I developed my brain in such a way that no other previously known human could,I was able to psychically manipulate all over atomic structures that used electrons, which pretty much meant everything! 

      I am unpracticed in this art other than what I have learnt in order to survive on this forsaken planet. And I still retain my faith, though questionable, and I pray to god that there us another more experienced psychic survivor, because I believe I still have untapped potential. 

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