The game that has taken my writing club by storm recently is what I call the Fill-in-the-Blanks Story. We start by writing words on slips of paper and dropping them into the appropriate bowls: NOUN (character), NOUN (object), NOUN (location), ADJECTIVE, VERB, or ADVERB. Then we proceed with the story and draw a word every time we need to fill in a blank. The results can be… weird.
(Teachers: I also tried this with younger writers, aged 7 and 8, but the first time I wrote out the slips of paper and they drew from those. The next day they were eager to write the words themselves, and did so, with a little reminding and help. Also: you may find that they are really keen to draw scenes from their crazy story afterwards!)
Here’s one written by Writing Club members (aged 11-12). This story template I call the “Quest Story”. At the bottom of the post I will attach a link to the story with blanks, so you can try it yourself with your friends.
Obi-Wan Kenobi’s Quest
The black Obi-Wan Kenobi coldly rolled to the Death Star, seeking the striped leaf. He was wearing a ukelele and his only weapon was glittery air. As he passed a swamp he heard a voice say,
“I can help you.”
He turned to see a crumbly, awful squid. “You can? How?”
“This will help you on your quest.” The squid gave him a girly chess piece.
“Holy cat!” he exclaimed. “Thanks!”
As he idiotically ran along, he suddenly spotted the striped leaf that he was looking for. “At last! I found it!”
But as he reached for it there was a poof of smoke and an insulting, small potato man appeared.
“Not so fast! That leaf is mine!”
Obi-Wan pulled out his glittery air, but the potato man had a weapon too: a scowling pencil case!
The two of them sleepily picked and pranced all afternoon until the sun was slowly eating. Obi-Wan Kenobi noticed that the swamp around them had turned into a castle.
“How terrible!” he thought. Then he suddenly remembered the girly chess piece that the squid had given him. He pulled it out and it suddenly put at the potato man, who immediately gave up.
“I give up! You are beautiful.” And he vanished in another puff of smoke.
Obi-Wan Kenobi picked up the striped leaf and gently pranced back to his home in the hilarious zoo, and lived sleepily ever after.
Next week I will post another story template for you to try… Have fun!