Short story inspiration #1

1 Mar

I am about to tackle creative writing with my Year 11 students as part of their Area of Study.  I know, from my own experience and the whinging of classes past, that coming up with and idea is often the most difficult part of the process.  With that in mind, I want to put together a series of stimulus articles and texts which students could use to inspire a narrative.  I will also outline how I would go about using that stimulus to engage with different Areas of Study.  This is the first post in that series.

The stimulus that I have chosen is an article from The Guardian, entitled ‘New Era estate could means-test residents to set individual rents‘.

How could a student use this article as inspiration for an AOS Discovery story?

Inspired by the stimulus article, students could write a narrative about what community members discover about themselves and their community when the sense of equality that underpins their connection is replaced by a hierarchical scheme.  Really competent students could even use the means-tested rent idea as a metaphor for the discoveries we make out ourselves and others within a national or global community.

How could a student use this article as inspiration for an AOS Belonging story?

On the surface, this article is all about belonging to people and place.  While a student could write a narrative that explores those ideas specifically, a more nuanced approach would be to use the article as inspiration for a narrative about the costs of belonging.  A weaker student could write a narrative about the price (financial and emotional) that a community would pay to stay together, while a stronger student could weave together three narratives threads to explore the implications for belonging when residents make different choices.

How could a student use this article as inspiration of an AOS Change story?

This article is the perfect inspiration for a narrative about the changing nature of a community.  A strong narrative might explore the changes that ripple through a community in the days immediately after the means-tested rent policy is implemented.  For some people, those changes will be positive, building a sense of collaboration and community.  For others, the changes will be negative, perhaps causing them to resent neighbours and zealously guard their privacy.  It is important, for this purposes of this narrative, to realise that all changes trigger others, altering the character of a previously close-knit community.

Advertisements

2 Responses to “Short story inspiration #1”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Short story inspiration #3 | Once uPUN a time... - March 5, 2015

    […] with my project to kick-start my students’ creative thinking by providing story starters, I have taken this article and come up with some suggestions for how it could be used as […]

  2. Short story inspiration #4 | Once uPUN a time... - March 14, 2015

    […] other short story ideas see here, here and […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: