My teens spend three of their four years learning to write non-fiction: essays, research papers, literary analysis, book reviews, blog posts, business letters, letters of recommendation, and more essays. But, that leaves out a whole form of writing that is creative in nature: telling a story.
We All Love a Story!
A Bold Step!
Julianna used Konos too. Her story was completely different from Katie Beth’s.
What a blessing!
This came with lessons on Dvd, as well as a teacher’s guide, student journal, and a sample adventure novel, The Prisoner of Zenda. This program focused on adventure which Rosie loved. The lessons were helpful, clear, and easy to apply to the novel that began to come together.
I figured that we would count that year as our Fiction Writing Year in high school. But, then Rose and I came up with a plan.
The Brand-New Plan
We both loved to read them so why not write them. When I couldn’t find a curriculum, I put one together.
We read classic who-dun-its and wrote a murder mystery step-by-step, creating characters, throwing in clues and red herrings, misdirecting our readers, and adding that twist at the end. We had a blast!
Benefits of Writing a Novel
- Literature became more understandable at a deeper level. We "got it" when it came to plot, setting, characterization, theme, foreshadowing, etc. Once you do it yourself, you recognize it in other books
- We learned that writing a novel is hard work and how to press through writer's block
- We realized that we had a story (or many more) inside of us
- We found that writing a cozy mystery is super-challenging when it comes to conflict because you create conflict without letting your readers know who the murderer is
- We found that logic came into play as we tied everything up neatly at the end.
Then We Wrote More Cozy Mysteries
For Shine and Jim, those years were fun and entertaining as we read chapter three aloud one more time and ended up making changes again.
Looking back, writing a novel in high school was a great choice. I’m glad we did it!
What about you? Why not consider devoting a year to writing fiction.
You Never Know Unless You Try!
Whoa! Back that truck up. All of us are made in the image of God. He is the Ultimate Creator and each of us is creative in some way.
We make the mistake of thinking that some of us are storytellers and others are just, well, um…well, not so much. For many of us, we don’t realize we have a gift in an area until we are introduced to it.
The great thing about all three curricula we used was that it took us step-by-step. It wasn’t just a matter of putting a blank piece of paper in front of them and saying, “Hey sweetheart, please write a novel.”
Where To Purchase Who Dun It
Who Dun It? Murder Mystery Literature & Writing is a 1-Credit High School English course. This is one of my favorite courses to teach! Students have a blast! I have a blast!
If you want to take the course with me online, sign up at True North Homeschool Academy for the 2022/2023 school year HERE.
Yes, this is an out-of-the-box English course, but I love that homeschooling allows us to do something unique and fun!
Let me know if you do creative writing or novel writing in high school. I would love to hear your story. Please comment below.
Until next time, Happy Homeschooling!
Merey (Meredith Ludwig Curtis)