Why Not Write? Wednesday: Bronte and Gothicism

Happy Why Not Write? Wednesday and Happy Birthday to Emily Bronte!

 

Charlotte_Brontë

 

Emily Bronte, the author of the classic Wuthering Heights, was born on this day in 1818. She, along with her sisters, were brought up in the moors of England–a spooky yet idyllic space that set the tone for many of their novels. (Another classic, Jane Eyre, was written by Emily’s sister, Charlotte.)  That eery tone is called “Gothic.”

 

 

Gothicism is a school of literature, written in a way that describes strange or frightening events that take place in mysterious places. (Other books like Frankenstein and Dracula are considered Gothic Literature, and most Tim Burton films like Nightmare Before Christmas and Coraline could also be put into this category as well.)

What if you were to write a gothic? Start with a setting, be it a creepy old house, railroad tracks, a haunted Hospital, and then come up with characters and action that is taking place.  Make it a little be mysterious and have fun with it!

gothiccastle

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Why Not Write? Wednesday: Super Moon to the Rescue!

Happy Why Not Write? Wednesday!

 

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Have you noticed that big Super Moon lighting up the sky the last few nights? NASA says all three full moons this summer (July 12, August 10 and September 9) will be Super Moons. This means that it appears 14% larger and 30% brighter than a typical full moon because it’s orbiting closer than ever to earth. Pretty cool, huh? Why don’t we use this phenomenon for inspiration?

Write a story personifying the super moon as a superhero (or super villain) explaining the evil it is fighting against, its super powers and other details you can think of.

Here are a few prompts to start you out:

What would be the super moon’s super powers?

If the super moon could speak, what would it say?

If the super moon was a super hero, who would be the super villian? Why would they be against one another?

What would be a problem that the super moon would have to fix? Who would she/he need to save?

 

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Why Not Write Wednesday?…Invent a Sport!

Every Wednesday our creative writing prompt challenges you to pick up your pen and indulge your author self! 

 

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Wednesday again…it’s time to write!

The days of summer are in full swing, friends are playing one-on-one basketball on the park courts, golfers are out with their carts and clubs, and World Cup soccer has been blaring on the TVs all around us. Beautiful weather is a good reminder of which sports and activities we love best!

But, what if you could make up your own sport to play or watch?

What would the rules be? What would it be called? Would it be played in teams or individually? What would be the object of the game? Would there be winning and losing? Would you use a ball, a puck, a frisbee, or some other object? What would you wear? How many people would play at a time? Where would you play? Indoors, outdoors or both? Is there water involved? Snow? Grass?

Write a how-to for your new sport, and maybe you could even get some friends together and try playing it! Let us know how the game/match goes for you all! Post your descriptions in the comments section of our blog.

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Why Not Write Wednesday in honor of Herman Hesse!

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It’s Why Not Write Wednesday and it’s also the birthday of German-Swiss author, poet, and Nobel Prize laureate, Hermann Hesse! Hesse was a man who wrote a lot about spirituality. especially about understanding his own and other peoples’ beliefs. So, in honor of him, why don’t we do the same?

What do you believe in? This doesn’t necessarily have to be tied to religion, though it can be! Are there ideas, attitudes, and/or actions you use to live and make decisions in your everyday life? Whatever it is you believe, we think it is worth writing down!

Here are some more specific prompts to get you started:

Describe what you think a belief is.

Do you believe that someone or something watches over our lives on planet earth? If yes, tell us about it. If not, tell us why not.

Do you have friends that believe different things than you or the same things as you? Explain how your beliefs are similar and different. How do the similarities and differences make you feel?

Or to take the idea of belief in a slightly different direction:

Do you believe in aliens? Ghosts? Bigfoot? Nesse? What about wizards or witches? Tell us why, and if there was a specific circumstance or event that solidified those beliefs, write about it using the 5 senses! (Have you ever seen or felt a ghostly presence?)

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Why Not Write Wednesday?: Personification

 

happy-car

 

 

It’s Why Not Write Wednesday? again!…

This week is all about personification. Pick and inanimate object and write a story from its perspective.

For instance, what do your shoes see everyday, what do they do, who do they talk to? What about your bed? Or you car? Or your favorite necklace?

Or, for a different angle, write about your body parts as if they were their own beings, separate from you.

What are your feet named? What do your hands like holding the most? What’s your heart’s favorite dance?

You get the drill…go wild with this one!

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The Mother of all Kid’s Summer Reading Lists…

What better way to tempt your kids away from the screens of many varieties, and the siren songs they sing, than with a list of captivating books to read!

NPR has done us all a great service by enumerating 100 of the best ones for kids, ages 9 – 14. Here’s how they describe their picks:

“The final 100 has a little bit of everything: tales of trying to fit in, escaping to magical lands, facing prejudice, coming of age and fighting to survive. There are animal stories, pioneer sagas, science-fiction adventures and, of course, beloved classics…”

 

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There is a .pdf version that you can print out and have on hand, or on your mobile phone, when you set off for the library or the bookstore.

For more background on how the books were chosen and for more info on NPR’s Backseat Book Club for Kids, visit http://n.pr/K8dQwy

 

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Why Not Write Wednesday?: Challenges

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Keeping yourself writing during the summer can be a real challenge, and as this marks the first official Why Not Write Wednesday? of the summer vacation, let’s focus on that challenge, and other challenges that can cross our paths throughout life.

Here are some prompts to help you start out…

Can you think of a time when an obstacle really stood in your way? What was the challenge and the coveted reward?

What did you do to overcome the forces keeping you from the reward?

How did you feel before you tackled the challenge? How did you feel after?

What did you learn from the challenge?

Can you write a “How-To Guide” or some other step-by-step instructions on how to overcome whatever stood in your way? Try writing it in the same format and everything!

 

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Why Not Write? for Father’s Day!

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It’s another Why Not Write Wednesday and Father’s Day is this upcoming Sunday, June 15th! To celebrate all our favorite fathers, why don’t we write something about them? And maybe, you can give your creation to them for Father’s Day!

Here are some ideas to keep in mind as you write a story or poem about your favorite father!

Why do you appreciate your dad or someone else’s dad?

What do you appreciate about them?

What does your dad smell, sound, look, feel like?

What does you dad do that astonishes you or impresses you?

What do you love most about you dad, uncle, grandpa or brother?

What’s a favorite memory you have with your dad?

Do you have something special that only you and your dad share? What is it?

 

 

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Poetry at Commodore Sloat Elementary!

Our fourth grade students at Commodore Sloat Elementary spent the spring term reading, learning, and writing poetry. They focused on different forms, worked with similes, metaphors, and personification, and learned to put forth their own ideas poetically.

 

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Autobiography

I am a sister to Jennifer, Stephanie, Justin, and Justice.

A am funny, crazy, creative, and active Continue reading

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The Secret Writers at Chabot Elementary

Chabot Elementary’s 4th-5th graders spent this spring working on “Secrets”. They created secret identities, recipes, mysteries…the rest we can’t tell ;)!

Read some of their creations below:

“As I look in the mirror I see someone different than the real girl.
All of the talents I posses have changed. I do not see the brave girl
who can keep a straight face while her teacher yells at her. In her
place, I see a dirty, sassy girl who stares back with an “Is that
so?!” expression on her face. Instead of the girl who can break up and
sort out fights between kids even five years older than her, I see a
Talk-Back-So-What-Girl sighing and rolling her eyes…”
-Anthony James Cardanal (student’s pen name) Continue reading

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