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Open Right

Kirsty Eagar: Write What You Know

Session Info:

Students are often told to write what they know, but are often bored and uninspired by the thought of writing about their own lives.

Saltwater Vampires uses the shipwreck of the Batavia as the starting point for a modern day vampire story. As a premise, it seems impossibly removed from the world of the author, but the writing relies heavily on personal experience.

Using the novel to provide examples, students are shown how they can use their own experiences, emotional responses, empathy, observations and research to flesh out their characters and stories.

This session is highly interactive and works well with large groups (especially younger secondary students).

Topics:
  • The seven steps to a finished story
  • Building your story world
  • Getting to know your characters
  • Scenes as skeleton
  • Writing it real

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