Feedback ppt assessment 3 suspense 2013

Suspenseful short story aimed at
Australian teen readers
 Range:
7/20 – 20/20
 Average 14.8
 Atmosphere
as part of creating suspense
 Settings as part of creating suspense
 Use of teen protagonists
 Sources of threat: natural, animal, human
 Partial resolutions – very satisfying!
Possible solution
1. Too much orientation
Begin ‘in medias res’ – in the
middle of the thing. Flash back
to orientation briefly later
2. Ist person narrative as
protagonist: too much
confusion; pace of
discovery limited
Third person narrator focused
on protagonist, but who also
knows other things - omniscient
3. Present tense 
writing while running … or
Use it sparingly! Past is easier to
4. Ist person narrator
who is safe in present,
telling story of former
threat  reduces suspense
Avoid first person narrative
voice or choose the perspective
of someone other than the
Possible solution
5. Stereotypical
Build personality: name, quirk,
backstory hinted at, interact
with others, dialogue
6. Out of time
Practise under time limit; keep
the scope of your story smallfew characters and events
7. “one trick pony”
Show range and control
8. Forgot an element of
the task
Check the marking criteria as
well as the question – often!
Possible impact
1. Be specific about
Build atmosphere to enhance
authenticity; stronger appeal to
2. Use gender carefully
More original characters – raise
different and deeper issues
3. Use race carefully
More original characters – raise
different and deeper issues
4. Layer your threats:
natural, supernatural,
physical, psychological…
More dimensions to your story +
easy way to delay resolution 
increase suspense
5. Narrative perspective:
choose the antagonist’s
point of view
Possible impact
Emphasise threat  increase
6. Integration of other text Draw on other people’s work as
types and allusions to other a short-cut to adding meaning;
sophisticated metaphors.
7. Create dramatic irony –
use a narrative perspective
that is slightly warped or
More gripping story; audience is
active in the reading process
8. Study the form: read lots Learn about how other writers
of short stories
handle the constraints of the
short story.
Empathy + Threat + Delay = Suspense …
= a page-turner
= an engaged

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