Become an author!
Whatever you do, be creative.
What’s in your focus today?
In today’s lesson you’ll become a real author! First, think of yourself in terms of the following questions:
- Have you ever tried making up stories?
- Do you think it’s easy or difficult to create a story?
- What do you need to write a good story?
- Is it easy to write from scratch or basing on some given ideas?
This lesson focuses on:
- ideas for a story;
- some common verbs with dependant prepositions;
- past simple, past continuous & past perfect;
- idioms and phrasal verbs;
Off we go!
What makes a good story?
In any story, there are basic questions in the core. Every professional writer or a journalist use them to design their texts. These are so called wh-questions:
Do you need to include all of them? No. It’s up to you as an author, the goals you set and a genre you are writing in.
- What types of books do you remember?
- Do you have a favourite one?
Look at the pictures and the titles of the books and match them with the genres.
Go at dependant prepositions
Read the short text below paying attention to the expressions in bold to understand what dependant prepositions mean.
Haley was hooked on computer games. She was fond of any new one and always bought them in an instant. That company was famous for its realistic atmosphere and characters similar to real people, which the girl was grateful for so much. At last, Haley applied for the position of the game designer in the company and unexpectedly got it. She was amazed at it. At the same time, she was embarrassed about her background. It was more than mediocre. Was she good enough for the position? The girl was in two minds. When Haley was finally presented with the assignment, she even cursed it a few times…
So, the phrases in bold contain dependant prepositions, which are the prepositions that are naturally and frequently used with specific adjectives, verbs and nouns.
Check the meaning of the phrases from the text above
Verbs with dependant prepositions
As we are talking about writing stories, we need to remember that verbs are one of the most important tools to make a story dynamic. Let’s learn some verbs with dependant preposition to create motion in your story.
Verbs with FOR
They’re waiting for a bus.
He apologised for being late (to someone).
I applied for the job, but I didn’t get it.
How do you ask for a coffee in Polish?
I can’t go out tonight because I have to prepare for my interview tomorrow.
Verbs with TO
What kind of music do you like listening to?
Can I introduce you to my grandfather?
Please refer to the notes at the end for more information.
Nobody responded to my complaint.
She apologised to me (for something) the next day.
Verbs with IN
She doesn’t believe in coincidences.
Our company specialises in computer software.
You have to work hard if you want to succeed in life.
Verbs with OF
I don’t approve of hunting animals for their fur.
Our dog died of old age.
This shampoo smells of bananas.
Verbs with ON
Their decision will depend on the test results.
The film is based on the novel by Boris Pasternak.
If you make so much noise, I can’t concentrate on my work.
Come on! We’re relying on you!
We don’t agree on anything but we’re still good friends.
Verbs with WITH
I agree with everything you’ve said.
My assistant will provide you with more information if you need it.
We’re finding it difficult to deal with the stress.
Verbs with FROM
This spray should protect you from mosquitoes.
Has he recovered from the accident yet?
She won an award because she saved someone from drowning.
I suffer from allergies.
What to write about?
Universal story plots
From time to time, even the most seasoned storytellers struggle to plot out their stories. It seems that there are
endless options to choose from. Yet, the best stories which already exist and are dearly loved by most of us have
created story types we can turn to. I’ll introduce you to 6 universal plots that underpin all stories.
The first: a hero versus a monster.
The main character sets out to defeat an evil force that threatens to destroy everything. Our hero usually goes
through fire and ice to save the planet, and also, their bravery and devotion help them to overcome every obstacle in
The second: from rags to riches.
A kind-hearted hero from humble beginnings suffers an injustice until, finally, they obtain what they have been dreaming of for so
long. It’s usually money, power or the love of their life. Yet suddenly, the main character realizes they’ve bitten off
more than they can chew and can’t handle their success. They lose everything and have to fight to get it back. In the
end, our hero grows personally due to everything they’ve gone through and regains their desired life.
The third plot is common in children’s literature.
The main hero ends up in an unfamiliar place, which is usually a magical land, and must explore it to return home.
Along the way, they meet different characters and face a series of hardships which lead to changing their life
The next type is my favourite — a comedy.
A cheerful story that centres on a confusing situation which causes conflict before a happy ending. The conflict
involves a lot of funny misunderstandings, but finally, the confusion clears up and the main heroes celebrate the joy
The fifth plot form is a tragedy.
Despite the fact that the hero is initially a good person, they’ve made many mistakes in their life and therefore turn
out to be frustrated with it. They can’t resist temptation and end up undergoing a series of trials that lead to their
downfall or even death.
The sixth plot type is opposite to the previous one: the rebirth of a villain.
The protagonist is an unpleasant person who meets someone willing to help them redeem themselves. That person’s
job is to reveal the villain’s hidden feelings and wishes, and improve their world view.
These plot types are not the only ones you can follow. Feel free to combine them or think of something that falls
outside all of these. Remember, these are a guide that is supposed to help you choose a plot to help get your
Let’s get some details from the text. Answer the questions below.
Past perfect. Why do we need it? To explain what happened before another action in the past. The form of past perfect is a piece of cake: had (not) + V3. “Had” is the auxiliary verb in the past perfect. Examples.
When I came home, my sister had already gone. (First, my sister left, then I came). He suddenly realized that he hadn’t told his parents where he was going. Had they heard anything about that man before they saw him?
Improvise with the pictures