PART 2 - WRITING - Summary
|Time allowed:||1 hour 20 minutes|
|Number of parts:||2|
|Number of questions:||Part 1: one compulsory question|
Part 2: one question from a choice of five
|Types of task:||Article, email, essay, letter, report, review, story.|
The FCE short story task probably poses two major problems. For some students who believe they lack creativity to invent stories, it is perhaps difficult to decide what to write about. For others, it is difficult to tell a story within the word limit.
To begin with, let’s de-mystify the task. You are not expected to write a story with full development of setting, plot and characters. You should remember that the purpose of the text is to entertain the reader. You may imagine you are taking part in a writing context or that your story will be published in a magazine. An anecdote dealing with just one episode worth telling will do. Let’s see some guidelines:
What is the expected language here? It is important to have a good handling of tenses for the reader to follow the sequence of events. Try to vary your structures, you can use reported speech or quote some words from the characters to make it more vivid (Reported Speech) Sentence length and punctuation require some thought, too.
Possible start & finish lines: The instructions for this task usually include a start or finishing line for your story. You must not alter it. This line could be in the first or third person.
How many words can I write? Between 120 to 180 words. Let’s say that 201 is too much! To keep within the range of the word limit, you will probably have to focus on some of the many things involved in writing a story.
How much to say about the place, time, characters and action? These are decisions you make at the planning stage. Choose what is more important to clearly picture the episode you want to narrate.
Remember that you will not be tested on creativity. You should be able to clearly put forward a mini short story that can create interest and entertain.