Narrative Writing

Writing to Narrate

Story telling is an art! A plot contains a series of events that are presented from a particular perspective. Take the reader on a journey of exploration in a logical manner. They should gain knowledge and insight of your world and its characters.

Narrative Writing, figure 1

Stories can be real or imagined, just as long as they are believable and captivate your audience. Your piece should aim to entertain and motivate readers to do something, after reading. High level writing, intends to educate by presenting challenging concepts and themes.

Remember, the reader cannot see and most probably has never experienced the location and events within your narrative. Therefore, you must use extensive vocabulary to pique their interest, especially vivacious verbs along.

The Question

Sometimes you are given an image to act as a stimulus:

Narrative Writing, figure 1

For example, write a story set on a deserted island as suggested by this picture

Alternatively, you may be given a statement like:

For example:

  1. Write a story about a time you were without Wi-Fi.
  2. Write a story about a locked drawer.
  3. Write a story about an uncomfortable journey.

Planning an Effective Response

If an image is given to you, during your exam, then you are given a handy head start and you can proceed to planning.

Annotate the image; again really squeezing out that detail and again trying not to limit yourself to just the obvious details. In what section of the plot would this image be found? What else could you rationally presume would feature in this scene? Do make your events before or after this scene overly dramatic.

If you are not provided with an image, you have to work a little harder but you are now free from restrictions. What appropriate experience can you draw on for inspiration? Keep it minimal and something that can be imagined by all, otherwise, you will overwhelm your reader. You do not want them to suffer from information overload.

Things to consider, whilst planning:

  1. Character
  2. Setting
  3. Complications
  4. Climax
  5. Moral?

Get straight into the action! Do not waste time by over-developing the characters and setting at the detriment of moving the plot forward. You can do this as the drama unravels. Just reveal enough to make them imaginable and intriguing. You need to captivate your reader’s attention, as soon as possible. Maintain their curiosity from the beginning right the way through the piece, without losing their interest or confusing them.

Narrative Writing, figure 1

Your story should reflect conscious crafting and then it is bound to enjoyable.

What is a plot?
Your answer should include: Series / Events
What is the aim of a successful narrative?
Your answer should include: Entertain / Motivate / Educate
What should you not waste time on?
Your answer should include: Over-Developing / Characters / Setting