Creative writing gives you nearly one-sixth of your overall marks in the GCSE English Language, so it's worth being prepared for the tasks and considering how to write 'creatively'.
Creative writing tasks
Depending on the exam board your school follows, you will have different creative writing tasks to do. They may be under controlled assessment conditions or in your exam. Your teacher will tell you exactly what you have to do, but your tasks will fall under the following headings:
- Moving images: writing for or about film or TV programmes.
- Commissions: responding to a set brief, such as a an opinion piece for a newspaper.
- Re-creations: taking a story in one form (like a poem) and rewriting it in another (like an article).
- Narrative writing: writing an original story.
- Writing from personal experience: writing something which is about yourself, or your life.
You will be marked according to the criteria for your particular GCSE, but these are the main things you need to consider:
- Content - what you actually say. Is it 'right' and is it interesting?
- Organisation - how you lay out your writing. Is it 'right' and is it clear?
- Accuracy - words, spelling and grammar. Are they the 'right' words in the 'right' style?
- Effect - how you create an impact. Have you grabbed the reader and made them feel what you intended?
Getting it right!
Creative writing is not just about showing that you are full of brilliant ideas; you also need to understand the basics of all reading and writing.
- Genre - what form are you writing (an article, script, poem, letter, story etc)?
- Audience - who are you writing it for (kids, adults, males, females etc)?
- Purpose - why are you writing it (to persuade, argue, review etc)?
Once you can answer these questions, you will be able to work out the fourth key idea:
- Style - how are you writing (formal, chatty, serious, comic, slang etc)?
For your creative writing tasks you will need to show you understand each of these four things. Be clear about what you are writing, why you are writing and who you are writing for.