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Novelist Rebecca Abrams offers advice for young aspiring fiction writers by offering tips on how to: find inspiration; learn about writing dialogue; dream up characters; devise plots; and so fill that frightening empty page. But above all, she says, it is important to remember that no one expects someone to pick up a violin and play it straightaway. It is the same with writing – you have to learn the basics, build on them, and practise.
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First broadcast:
12 January 2012

Classroom Ideas

Can be used to help students to experiment with starting stories in different ways. They will be led through a series of exercises to help them formulate a new story. At the end, they will assess which idea works best for them. The first exercise is called 'diving in' and students have approximately seven minutes to write the outline of a story. Next, students try 'post-its' where they are given ten post-it notes. On each note they write out a moment in the story and then re-order the post-its to suit their ideas. The last idea is 'note down' where students listen to or politely overhear a conversation between two other people and briefly note down what they have heard. Can students write the opening to their novel or short story by diving into writing about the main character and perhaps using dialogue?

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